The Trauma Informed Church
Sturt Lecture

The Sturt Lectures are inspired by John and Agnes Sturt, who were influential in the early development of holistic counselling in Aotearoa New Zealand. Historically the Sturt Lectures focussed on conversations between Counselling and Theology, however in light of the upcoming release of the final report from the Abuse in Care Royal Commission of Inquiry the conversation has expanded to engage with Pastors and Christian leaders as we grapple with the effects abuse and trauma has on individuals, whānau and communities across Aotearoa. 

Engage with counsellors and church leaders in this one-day conference which will equip you with the language and tools to recognise and respond to people suffering as a result of trauma. Together we will reflect on elements of church culture that supported, and in some instances still support harmful behaviour, and be resourced with tools to build trauma-informed churches equipped to create healing communities. We believe the church has been called to play this vital role supporting flourishing within its community.

Where Waitakere Chambers, 6 Henderson Valley Road Auckland, Auckland
When 9:00am - 4:00pm
Cost Starting from $120
RSVP Register via the link below


Charlotte Cummings

BA English/Sociology, BCouns, Cert Clinical Supervision for Human Services, Post Grad Diploma in Health Sciences (endorsed in Mental Health with Distinction)

Charlotte is based in Ōtautahi, Christchurch, with her young family. Charlotte works across a variety of different roles – counsellor, consultant, and Licensed Private Investigator. One of her central passions is ensuring that the church and parachurch organizations are safe places for all people. Charlotte believes that following the decades the church has had of hearing the stories of people who have been abused within Christian communities, we must ensure we learn from these stories, and develop community cultures which challenge the power imbalances which can lead to abuse and harm. 



He uri te taha o tōna pāpā nō Ngāpuhi nui tonu Ko Ngāti Kaharau, Ngāti Hau ki Omanaia ōna hapū Ko Harema Reihana tōna whāmere Ko Dallas Neihana Te Waipounamu Harema tōna ingoa

(BSocSc, PgDip Counselling, PgDip Te Tohu Paetahi, PgCert in Theology)

Dallas’ whakapapa is rooted in Waihōpai and the Hokianga in Aotearoa, and Perthshire in Scotland. He and his wife Lucy (Lebanese, Scottish & Irish) have 3 tamariki (Bear, Wolf and Pipi) and they live in Ōtautahi. Dallas has a multi-faceted professional background in youth and international development; conflict resolution and various multi-disciplinary therapeutic contexts in the Community, Government and Public Sectors.

Currently, Dallas is an Advisor to the Family Court within the Ministry of Justice assisting them to ensure their practices are honouring of, and not re-traumatising to, Māori. He is also an advisor to Aroturuki Tamariki (The Independent Children’s Monitor) and lectures on the topic of Cultural Context in Aotearoa in the Dept of Applied Sciences and Social Practice. Dallas is also a Strengths Coach, Supervisor and Facilitator of Team Culture Development in the church, not-for-profit and Corporate sectors.

One of Dallas’ main vocational roles is co-crafting spaces in inter-denominational and missional contexts that foster the ministry of reconciliation and holistic discipleship and formation through vulnerable storytelling. His leadership in guiding men through explorations of their trauma, brokenness and shame, coupled with a marriage ministry alongside his wife, embodies a passion for a transformative flourishing that is aligned with an original God ordained design. He is currently delving into the applied study of Contemplative and Emotionally Healthy Spirituality and the Enneagram.

Clint Ussher

BSc, MDiv, DMin

Clint Ussher is husband to Jamie and father to Evee and Iris. Clint serves as both the founding and Lead Pastor of The Well Church in Ōtautahi, Christchurch and as the Director of Laidlaw Centre for Church Leadership. With over 20 years of pastoral leadership experience, Clint knows first-hand the difficulties and challenges facing the Church and her leaders, yet he maintains a deep love and high belief for what is possible when the Church and her leaders are healthy and flourishing. Clint’s highest commitment is to live and lead out of the overflow of his own life in and with Jesus, albeit imperfectly.

Sarah Scott Webb

MAIR, PGDipApplTh, DipEd, B.Mus

Sarah has 18 years’ experience working in anti-trafficking and is based in Christchurch, New Zealand. She is the Director of the Oceania Freedom Network and co-leader/ founder of SIM’s global anti-trafficking ministry For Freedom.She also serves as the World Evangelical Alliance Mission Commission’s anti-trafficking specialist and is on the leadership team of the World Freedom Network. 

Sarah has extensive experience in trauma-informed practice. Last year she was actively involved in the European Freedom Network’s anti-trafficking response to the Ukraine war and was part of the World Evangelical Alliance Trauma Taskforce, providing trauma support & training to Ukrainian pastors and leaders.

Aaron Hardy


Aaron Hardy is a husband to Te Ata, and a father to Tākirikoteata, Hawaiki, and Te Āio. He is a leader of Te Rautini Church in Kirikiriroa, Hamilton and leads Te Rautini Music as part of this in the writing and releasing of songs. He is passionate about Aotearoa, her story, the Church, and the journey of reconciliation, healing, and health going forward. He has been leading for 15 years. Most importantly, he is a lifelong fan of the Warriors.

Lisa Spriggens

BA, MCouns (Hons), MNZAC

Lisa Spriggens is Head of Counselling at Laidlaw College. She has previously worked as a counsellor in high schools, and with those who have experienced sexual violence. She is completing a PhD at the University of Melbourne and regularly delivers workshops within church and parachurch contexts focussed on supporting survivors of sexual violence. Lisa is passionate about creating safe spaces for survivors of sexual violence where healing and hope is present.

Faye Pouesi

MSocP, Dip Couns, Advanced Cert Supervision, NZAC

Faye Pouesi  is Mātanga Oranga Kaiārahi Lead Therapist at Vision West. Over the past 26 years, Faye has worked alongside individuals and whānau throughout Te Uru o Tamaki Makaurau West Auckland and wider Auckland, as a counsellor and group facilitator specialising in complex historical trauma, including sexual abuse, intergenerational trauma, gang violence and domestic violence.

Faye’s holistic approach to restoration, training and experience forms the foundation of her work with individuals and whānau whose lives were/are enmeshed in gangs and intergenerational trauma and abuse. It’s this approach, coupled with her many years of counselling experience and expertise that has earned Faye a reputation as a counsellor who is able to both listen with empathy and impart wisdom with compassion.

Registration for this STURT Lecture also includes morning tea and lunch.

This event will not be livestreamed.