Sexual Assault Program

 

Sexual assault is a significant trauma that can affect someone mentally, emotionally, and physically.  Often it helps to talk to someone after the sexual assault.  To help sort out your options and receive emotional support, you can call the 24-hour crisis line.  One of our trained advocates can speak with you over the phone or meet you at the hospital or sheriff’s department.

 

S.A.F.E.’s Sexual Assault Program provides a 24-hour Crisis Hotline for victims of sexual assault and rape.  The Crisis Hotline is staffed by advocates who have been trained to work with victims of sexual assault and rape.  If you, or someone you know, is in need of services please encourage them to contact us at 706-379-3000.

Calling the Crisis Hotline is safe and confidential.  We will not force you into making any decisions you do not want to make.  We will listen to you and help provide you with the tools and resources you need to make safe decisions. Sexual assault is a significant trauma that can affect someone mentally, emotionally, and physically.  One of our trained advocates can speak with you over the phone or meet you at the hospital or sheriff’s department to help you navigate your options.

What if I’ve been assaulted?

First, realize that no matter what, you are NOT to blame for what happened.  The person who assaulted you is responsible for his or her actions.

In the face of danger, our bodies go on “auto pilot” and we often do not make conscious choices about how we will respond to the assault.  Whether or not you were able to fight back, you are not to blame for the assault.  Physically surviving a sexual assault means you did what you needed to survive.

You may be feeling many different emotions right now- anger, fear, sadness, anxiety- or you may feel very little at all – you may feel numb.  These reactions are all normal.  Your view of the world may have changed.  Your faith may be challenged.  Your relationships may be affected.  Remember that you have experienced a trauma and emotional responses are normal.  Healing takes time and there isn’t any one “right way” to heal.

There are people who are willing to listen when you are ready.  You can call our crisis line any time, day or night, to talk to one of our advocates.  You are not alone.  S.A.F.E. is here to help. Speaking with an advocate can help you be aware of the options you have for medical and legal assistance.

Medical Advocacy

 Our Sexual Assault Victim Advocates provide support and information to sexual assault survivors and their loved ones during the medical exam and evidence collection process at health care facilities in Union and Towns Counties.

Sexual Assault Advocates respond 24-hours a day, seven days a week to:

  • Listen and offer emotional support to survivors and their loved ones
  • Provide information on what to expect as a survivor of sexual assault
  • Stay with the survivor for as much or as little of the exam as the survivor chooses
  • Facilitate communication between the survivor and medical professionals
  • Inform the survivor of his or her rights as a victim of crime
  • Help the survivor plan for his or her safety upon discharge from the health care facility
  • Assist the survivor in obtaining comfortable clothing to wear home when necessary
  • Offer information to other social service agencies

An Advocate will NOT:

  • Make decisions for the survivor
  • Pressure the survivor to take any one path to healing
  • Give medical or legal advice
  • Share any information about the survivor or the survivor’s situation without his or her knowledge and consent

Legal Advocacy

Some sexual assault survivors can choose to pursue legal action through the criminal judicial system. S.A.F.E.’s Sexual Assault Victim Advocates provide emotional support and education during what can be a lengthy and confusing process. Our advocates can help in the following ways by:

  • explaining how the legal process works and the meaning of legal terminology
  • providing directions on how to physically locate different court rooms
  • providing accompaniment and emotional support during meetings with law enforcement, prosecutors, and at all court proceedings
  • educating survivors on their rights as crime victims, which includes the following information: protection orders, and the Georgia Crime Victim Compensation Program, which reimburses survivors for some of the financial losses due to the assault.

Crisis Line

S.A.F.E.’s Sexual Assault Program provides a 24-hour crisis hotline for victims of sexual assault and rape.  This hotline is accessible by calling 706-379-3000.  The crisis hotline is staffed by advocates who have been trained to work with victims of sexual assault and rape.  If you, or someone you know, is in need of services please encourage them to contact us.

Calling the Crisis Hotline is safe and confidential.  We will not force you into making any decisions you do not want to make.  We will listen to you and help provide you with the tools and resources you need to make safe decisions.

Prevention Education

S.A.F.E. provides prevention education to the local schools in all grades. The education focuses on teaching students about self-awareness, smart choices, body safety, healthy boundaries, healthy relationships, and resources. The curriculum are evidence-based and age-appropriate. Our goal is to minimize violence in our community by helping our youth.