Sexual assault is a hard issue to face, and getting support is maybe the hardest — but most important — step. Whether you or someone you know needs immediate help, or if you simply want to learn more about the issue, here is a handy list of resources. (And don’t miss our survey of what you need to know about sexual assault in the Asian American communityspecifically.)
The one thing better than support is prevention. California’s Crime and Violence Prevention Center has a handy tip sheet of facts, safety suggestions, and defense tips for what do to if you’re attacked. We also encourage sharing Men Can Stop Rapewith your male friends and family members. After all, sexual assault isn’t just a women’s issue; it’s a human rights issue.
National Sexual Violence Resource Center
The National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC) is your one stop shop for all the resources you might need. From news and publications to events and organizations, NSVRC has a pretty comprehensive list of where you can go to find support and information about sexual violence.
Love Is Respect
http://www.loveisrespect.org; 1-866-331-9474; text “loveis” to 22522
As the URL suggests, this teen-targeted dating abuse hotline emphasizes that love is respect—and helps young people determine what abuse is along with providing a safe space where teens can get information and support. Love Is Respect is a joint project between the National Domestic Violence Hotline and Break the Cycle.
National Resource Center on Domestic Violence
Separate from the NSRVC mentioned above, the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence is another comprehensive resource, with various initiatives focusing on women of color, awareness building, LGBT support, and more.
Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network
The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) is the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization. Besides general information about sexual assault and how to provide help to victims, the organization’s website also hosts a 24/7 online hotline.
Asian & Pacific Islander Institute on Domestic Violence
The Asian & Pacific Islander Institute on Domestic Violence (API Institute) is a national resource center on domestic violence, sexual violence, trafficking, and other forms of gender-based violence in Asian and Pacific Islander communities.
National Center for Victims of Crime, Victim Service Helpline
The National Center for Victims of Crime provides basic information about sexual assault and encourages victims to get help and to help others through the service helpline.
Asian Law Caucus
The Asian Law Caucus provides legal and civil rights services to Asian American families. While the organization focuses on issues including immigration and housing, it also provides legal aid to victims of domestic abuse and sexual assault.
Center for the Pacific Asian Family
This website is great in that its content is translated into many Asian languages, to make support accessible for as many groups as possible. Here’s how serious the site is about making sure victims can access the resources they need: there’s a quick “hide site” option for victims who might be closely monitored by their abusers.
Local Support Centers
Many cities have their own regional resources. A few examples: Philadelphia’s Women Organized Against Rape is the city’s only rape crisis center, offering different programs like treatment services, prevention education, and advocacy for victims. The Washington Coalition of Sexual Assault Programs (whose phone number varies by county) is a non-profit that unites resource centers in the state to eliminate sexual violence. The New York Asian Women’s Center helps women and their children overcome domestic violence and other forms of abuse by empowering them to govern their own lives, offering multi-lingual support programs and shelter services. In the Chicago area, Apna Ghar provides holistic services for women and children, including legal services, an emergency hotline, and empowering outreach programs.
University Prevention & Awareness Centers
Likewise, your university or college may have an office or department dedicated to sexual assault prevention and provide resources for both victims and volunteers. Check out your university’s online resource centers to find out more. For example, the University of Michigan’s SAPAC provides volunteer training for those who want to help victims and promotes healthy relationships.