Earlier this month, former Wallaby star Clyde Rathbone publicly disclosed not only his battle with depression, but also that the cause of his illness was childhood abuse. Determined to raise awareness and in the hope of preventing child abuse in Australia, the world-class athlete is now dedicating a serious amount of his energy to Project KidSafe.
Project KidSafe is an awareness campaign for parents, developed by Survivors Australia developed to enlighten and upskill parents on keeping their kids safe.
“Given my recent public statement about my own battles, I’ve decided that I’d like to help others by creating awareness and hopefully preventing more kids from suffering as I did,” said Rathbone. “The work that Survivors Australia do is truly inspirational, and I’m excited about this new direction in my life!”
It’s been reported that Clyde suffered severe depression following a premature retirement, and marriage breakdown, however he wants the public to know that the cause of his chronic depression was in fact the trauma of his childhood abuse. This is one of the many reasons he is determined undertake the role of ambassador for Project KidSafe.
“Clyde’s courage in speaking publicly will go a long way towards helping to raise awareness for the suffering of child abuse survivors, as well as assisting in the prevention of further abuse,” stated Survivors Australia CEO, Nicole Wells.
“We are very proud to have Clyde on our team. His experience, courage and determination will help untold number of people – survivors and children alike.” Wells continued.
In his recent blog, Clyde wrote, “It was not long before I was playing for the Australian National Team, travelling the world and basically living what I thought were my dreams. The thing is I was never happy, I felt guilty that I could not appreciate the life many others could only dream of. By this point I had convinced myself that what I had gone through as a child was not that bad and I basically tried to forget about it. The fact is those issues never left me completely, they would express themselves in many ways. I would be angry or irritable or feel tension and stress and not really know why but for the most part I would say I functioned as well as I could and anyone who met me would think I was completely “normal”. And I maintained that fictitious existence for years.”
On the same day Clyde wrote this blog, he disclosed his abuse and years of ongoing associated symptoms to his family for the very first time.
Clyde will be the public face of Project KidSafe and K’s for Kids month, which is Survivors Australia’s national awareness campaign coming up in June, and will be the guest speaker at their fundraising ball on 21st June in Sydney.
To find out more about Survivors Australia visit their website www.survivorsaustralia.org
For further information:
Nikki Wells [email protected]
Founder, Survivors Australia www.survivorsaustralia.org
Ph: 0405 090234
Survivors Australia is a national not-for-profit providing resources for survivors of childhood abuse, as well as creating awareness for child protection.