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Rape Crisis Center takes multi-faceted approach against sexual assault

POSTED: July 30, 2018 6:16 a.m.
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RINCON — The Rape Crisis Center of the Coastal Empire (RCCCE) exists to ensure that no one is left alone in the wake of a sexual assault.
RCCCE isn’t just reactive, however. It is also at the forefront of education efforts to curb violent sexual acts.
RCCCE’s primary prevention education services include:
— Personal body safety programming for K-12
— Bullying prevention programming
— Internet safety
— Healthy relationships education
RCCCE’s prevention education services are provided upon request in each county it serves — Bryan, Chatham, Effingham, Evans, Liberty, Long and Tattnall.
“Our prevention education services are provided upon request in each county, while our advocacy services are based out of Chatham County,” said Tamika Jonas, prevention coordinator for RCCCE. “All services are provided free of charge.”
RCCCE advocacy services include:
— 24-hour crisis hotline (912-233-7273)
— Forensic evidence collection
— Hospital accompaniment
— Group and individual counseling
Sexual assault is a major public health issue. According to the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, an American is victimized every 98 seconds.
Additionally, it is estimated that one in four girls and one in six boys are sexually abused before they reach the age of 18. Nationally, people ages 12-34 are at the highest risk of being targeted by sexual predators.
Each year, the Rape Crisis Center reaches approximately 700 victims — including adults, child victims and family members of victims. The effects of sexual assault ripple through businesses, neighborhoods and schools, and that is why RCCCE is at the forefront to stop it. Its trained advocates are available any time day or night.
RCCCE crisis intervention programs include SART (Sexual Assault Response Team) and SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners), which makes the reporting process more responsive to the victim. An additional 15,000 people are reached each year with the various prevention programs for all ages, such as Good Touch/Bad Touch, Bullying Prevention, Rape Awareness and self-defense classes.
Being a member of Effingham County Family Connection helps spread RCCCE’s message.
“Partnering with Family Connection helps us to ensure that community partners are aware that services exist for survivors and youth in Effingham County,” Jonas said. “Collaborative partners have also provided opportunities for RCCCE to raise awareness of our services via resource fairs and Parent University. Our prevention education staff are always willing to provide workshops to students, parents and the community at large in order to empower Effingham County residents to foster a culture of respect that is free of violence.”
For general inquires about RCCCE, call (912) 233-3000 or visit www.rccsav.org.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the 26th story in a weekly series about organizations in Effingham County Family Connection, part of a statewide initiative that cultivates public and private collaboration at the local level. Georgia Family Connection is represented in each of the state’s 159 counties, making it the largest network of its kind in the nation. The Effingham County Board of Commissioners is the local affiliate’s fiscal agent.

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