What is a Sexual Assault Support Agency?
Many Sexual Assault Support Agencies go under the name of Rape Crisis, however it is not only victims of rape who can access their support. Sexual Assault Support Agencies are there to help anybody, male or female, who have been sexual violated or abused in any way.
What do Sexual Assault Support Agencies do?
Exactly what services are offered by a Sexual Assault Support Agency varies from city to city, however they all provide basic services, education, and support for survivors of sexual violence (or molestation ) and their families.
Some of the services and programmes they provide include:
Helping you find a suitable counsellor to talk through your ordeal. They will be able to put you in touch with an ACC registered counsellor in your area, so that ACC can help pay for your counselling costs.
Arranging for you to have physical check-up with a doctor who is understanding and sympathetic of what you have been through. A physical check-up is useful to help prevent any complications that may occur because of sexual assault, but it can also help build a case against the offender. Your body holds all sorts of evidence after a sexual assault, and some can be collected up to seven days after the assault.
Supporting you before, during, and after you have made a complaint to the police. If you are making a complaint soon after the assault took place, the police should contact a sexual assault support worker on your behalf. If they don’t, you have the right to ask for one. If you are making a police complaint months or years after the assault, you will need to contact a Sexual Assault Support Agency yourself.
Supporting you through the court and trial process. Sometimes court procedures can take months to work through, and asides from the legal and physical practicalities, it can be emotionally draining. A Sexual Assault Support Agency can help you through the whole process.
Supporting you if you suspect you were drug raped. Because sometimes with drug rape you have little or no memory of what happened, it’s hard to express your concerns. A Sexual Assault Support Agency can give you advice and practical support through the relevant tests and procedures. If you suspect you were drug raped, you need to contact the police or your Sexual Assault Support Agency as soon as possible.
Providing parents with education about how they can help keep their children safe from sexual assault or incest, plus how to deal with it if it happens.
Providing teenagers with education about how they can keep themselves safe, and what to do if they are sexually assaulted.
How are Sexual Assault Support Agencies funded?
Sexual Assault Support Agencies are charitable trusts and rely on donations, sponsorship and charitable grants to fund their work.
How can I get their help?
Most Sexual Assault Support Agencies are listed under Personal Emergencies in the White Pages of your phone book. In an emergency you should dial 111.
Click here — Find A Sexual Assault Support Group Near You — for a comprehensive list of Sexual Assault Support Agencies throughout New Zealand.
How much does it cost?
Sexual Assault Support Agencies offer their services free of charge.
Link to Sexual Assault Support Agency Websites
This is the excellent website for Rape Prevention Education (formerly Rape Crisis Auckland). Their focus is upon the prevention of rape and sexual abuse, and provides support and information to survivors of sexual abuse and their whanau/friends through a telephone information, referral and support-line in NZ.
It provides an abundance of Rape and Sexual Violation information (including legal definitions, charges under the Crimes Act, statistics, resources) about what you need to do, and who should see for help.
It also provides contact information for local Sexual Assault Support Groups. Click here to Find A Sexual Assault Support Centre Near You
The Sexual Abuse Survivors Trust is based in Christchurch.