In 2015, Luke Benson gave evidence, as a survivor, to the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. He told the Commission how the institutions and safeguarding systems that should have protected him failed; how the perpetrators of the abuse used positions of authority and trust to circumvent the systems that should have kept him and other children safe.
As a young boy at boarding school, I endured a period of sustained sexual abuse by a boarding house tutor. Almost 30 years later, at the Royal Commission, I gave evidence about that experience, the ongoing impact, and I finally learnt the truth about the many failures in the school’s systems that let me and my friends down so badly.
Like many of the survivors who gave evidence, Luke was deeply re-traumatised by the experience. But from his distress came a determination and motivation to find a better way to protect others from harm. How could he use his skills and experience in technology to strengthen the safeguarding systems that failed to protect him?
The answer was dutyof.care
Luke’s understanding of the systemic safeguarding flaws, his passion to see real change and his knowledge of new technology were the catalyst for dutyof.care
He presented the idea to his employer, who immediately embraced it as a social good project that aligned with their passion for helping the community to thrive. Since that day, Blue Bike Solutions have provided the resources to make dutyof.care a reality.
dutyof.care continues to be developed by a small, dedicated team based in Melbourne. Our vision is to build a stronger, more effective safeguarding eco-system for children and other vulnerable people. In its prototype form in 2018, dutyof.care has been used in disability services, schools, churches, sports, and arts. We are committed to making dutyof.care accessible and affordable for all organisations that work with children and other vulnerable people.