SoundCheck Aotearoa Appoints Sexual Harm Prevention and Response Advisor (SHAPRA)

May 10th 2023
Today SoundCheck Aotearoa have launched a new core service available to all people affected by sexual harm in Aotearoa’s music community. Introducing the Sexual Harm Prevention & Response Advisor (SHAPRA) service.
Kia ora koutou katoa,

Today we have launched a new core service available to all people affected by sexual harm in Aotearoa’s music community. Introducing the Sexual Harm Prevention & Response Advisor (SHAPRA) service.

Additionally, we can also announce our official formation as a charity after several years being operated by a small group of industry professionals with the help of independent specialists.

The SHAPRA service was developed in response to initial consultation with members of our music community, where the need for independent professional advice was heard loud and clear.

This free service is a safe and confidential channel for accessing specialist advice, consultation, support and advocacy, working with people to develop a solution for any situation they face.

Melanie Calvesbert takes up the role of SoundCheck Aotearoa’s first-ever SHAPRA, bringing over 25 years experience supporting people affected by sexual harm in Aotearoa. Working for a number of organizations, Mel was most recently National SAPRA (Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Advisor) for the New Zealand Defence Force, delivering a similar program to their community.

Since September 2022, Mel has worked alongside the music community delivering Professional Respect Training with Independent Sexual Harm Prevention Specialist, Rachel Harrison. Mel brings their skills of working in a survivor-focused, safe and confidential way to provide this service alongside SoundCheck Aotearoa.

“SoundCheck Aotearoa has been supporting the music community since 2020, with the firm belief that everyone is entitled to a safe workplace, whether that is an office, music venue, bar or recording studio,” says SoundCheck Aotearoa Board Chairperson, Jo Oliver.

“I am pleased that we can now announce both our formation as a charitable trust, and the appointment of Mel Calvesbert as Sexual Harm Prevention and Response Advisor. Mel will provide an independent and confidential channel for people and businesses to access advice on their situation, while SoundCheck Aotearoa remains committed to continuing its long-term work on culture change.”

The Sexual Harm Prevention and Response Advisor (SHAPRA) is available to:

✔  Anyone who has experienced harm

✔  Concerned friends and whānau, bystanders, colleagues, and members of the public who have engaged with someone working in the music community

✔  Businesses and workplaces responding to a situation

✔  Businesses and workplaces seeking advice on how to prevent harm from occurring

✔  Anyone who has done harm or is accused of harming someone.

The SHAPRA can offer support, information and resources, advice and guidance about available options, referrals to other services, advocacy where appropriate, and consultation on creating safer spaces.


“Our music community is such a source of joy and connection, but also faces complex challenges in being a safe, respectful, and inclusive place,” says SoundCheck Aotearoa Board Member, Lydia Jenkin.

“We hope the introduction of the SHAPRA service will create a real opportunity for healing, as well as helping our community to find solid guidance when needed.”

Read here for how to contact the SHAPRA, and for FAQ regarding the service.

SoundCheck Aotearoa gives thanks to the Ministry for Culture and Heritage for making this service possible with invaluable funding support.

About SoundCheck Aotearoa

SoundCheck Aotearoa is an action group formed in 2020 with the mission to foster a safe and inclusive culture for the music community. We believe that action is needed to address inequitable representation, challenge systemic discrimination, and advance impactful change across the music community. SoundCheck Aotearoa’s work is possible thanks to the funding and support of APRA AMCOS, Recorded Music NZ, NZ On Air, and the NZ Music Commission.
Read more about our Board & team here
Media Contact:
Anna Loveys, SoundCheck Aotearoa Project Manager

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