This app provides support for sexual assault survivors and their advocates to navigate emergency health care services.
After sexual assault, going to the health center to get treatment dramatically improves long-term outcomes for a survivor, especially if an advocate (someone they know or a trained volunteer) accompanies them through the process, which is often challenging for many reasons.
The app contains a Training for Volunteer Advocates and is a basic primer of the information that a US state-certified rape crisis counselor would receive as part of the 40-hour training that is generally required before a counselor can volunteer at hospitals.
The Training for Volunteer Advocates section of the app covers basic medical advocacy and includes a treatment overview and details about how to navigate the forensic exam, which is essential for evidence collection that can be used later in court. There are sections on safety planning and working with survivors of intimate partner violence, as well as special considerations, for example, materials for the LGBTQIA community and for survivors of drug-facilitated sexual assault.
Two additional user pathways, an In-Hand Resource for Survivors and an In-Hand Resource for Advocates, provide adapted information for use at health centers.
The original training material was developed by US rape crisis centers based on their experience with decades of emergency room advocacy work and has been adapted by a multicultural coalition of partners to be relevant for global use.
The community helping to build this resource is aware that many survivors enter health facilities that are not yet equipped to provide them with the appropriate treatments or facilities that cannot adequately collect forensic evidence. Our goal is for the Rape Crisis Counseling app to help generate awareness and demand for better quality services for sexual assault survivors around the world.
For more information, please visit http://www.rapecrisiscounseling.org/