Local nonprofit organization offers free counseling, 24-hour helpline for sexual assault survivors

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (CURLED) – Tues Center for Sexual Assault Survivors is safe and inclusive for all ages.
The center is the only rape crisis center on the peninsula with a 24-hour crisis hotline.

The crisis services are completely free. Survivors do not need insurance for individual counseling or self-help groups.

The staff also provides training with colleges and military personnel.

“It’s a community issue. Everyone should care, which is why we think our work is so important. We want our survivors to feel supported, respected, and heard and heard from,” said Jessi Brown, the center’s director of victim services and programs. “Sexual violence is so widespread, more than perhaps many people understand.”

The Crisis Unit is funded by the Department of Criminal Justice Services. Trained volunteers help answer questions and call the hotline.

From January 2021 to August 2022, the center received 177 hotline calls, offered 148 one-on-one counseling sessions, and provided 108 support group sessions.

Asia Austin, Crisis Treatment Specialist at The Center, works with adults on their journey to healing. Each session is tailored to the survivor.

“I just want to help people. I want to be there for them since sexual assault is so common now,” Austin said. “Coming into the session, you will learn that they have other sexual assault traumas from the past, from childhood, that they never had the opportunity to talk about.”

In order to keep the crisis services free for all ages, the board needs to raise money.

“There are more people than we know who are affected or are survivors,” said Elsa Vasquez, vice president of the board. “We are there for the people who nobody believes or who nobody wants to hear.”

The center relies on donations to continue helping the survivors.

If you want to help, the board invites you Light of Hope Gala on October 8th. The tickets are available now.

Visit WAVY.com for the latest updates.

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