We firmly believe that best practice in Sexual Violence Primary Prevention (SVPP) and Sexual Violence Prevention (SVP) organisations is, and must be, informed by our current understanding of sexual violence and its cultural context. We need to appreciate its impacts on society, on victims and survivors, and on those who have been sexually harmful. Understanding and first-hand experience shape our work with clients, the communities we work in, our organisations and relationships, political advocacy and activism. This draft Workforce Capability Framework is firmly based on government and community research, the voices of those with lived experiences of sexual violence and the expertise of frontline workers in the sexual violence sector.

 We produced this draft framework because we believe that prevention activities need to promote cultural and societal changes to increase protective factors and reduce cultural norms that support and enable sexual violence. The framework is designed to be a tool that supports, validates and reinforces this process.

We found that the extensive background and project work that led to this framework could be distilled down into four specific values and six essential practice principles. These form the basis of the framework and are woven through all the practise levels described. This means the framework not only identifies and outlines capabilities and progressions for people involved in the SVPP and SVP sector, it actively models the changes necessary to help communities create the conditions where sexual violence and intimate partner violence do not exist.

The values identified and explored in the framework are:

  • Empowerment – modelling consent and sharing power

  • Hope – the audacity that drives change

  • Openness to change – re-examining behaviours, attitudes and beliefs

  • Trustworthiness – the basis of social justice and healing


The principles that make up the competency strands for workforce development and consistent practice and quality are:

 Principle 1:  Treaty-based relationships with Tangata Whenua are a priority

Principle 2:  Specialist knowledge about the dynamics, impact and prevention of sexual violence must always be respected, critiqued and developed through collaborative practice

Principle 3:  The welfare and wellbeing of people using and providing SVPP and SVP services is paramount

Principle 4:  Empowering and collaborative practices must always be considered as being ‘in development’

Principle 5:  Practices and responses that are culturally informed, resourced and inclusive must be the norm, and should be reviewed continuously

Principle 6:  Sustainable practices and ongoing professional and personal development must be recognised and resourced

share power and expertise, and support workers to grow and thrive.