Sexual Assault Support Services' recognition as a comprehensive anti-sexual violence program is due largely to our skilled volunteers. Volunteers are involved in many capacities within the agency and are provided with a thorough training to prepare them for their chosen responsibilities.
Help survivors through the healing process.
As a volunteer advocate for SASS you will provide a confidential source of support and information to those affected by sexual violence through our 24-hour hotline. No previous experience is required as SASS will train Volunteers with a 36-hour training before taking any calls. Through this training you will learn to listen to the callers needs and appropriately support them in a time of crisis. You will also be referring survivors and connecting them with the resources that best meet their needs. This training will help you to identify and examine the options that a survivor has at each of the different stages of healing.
In addition to hotline coverage, you can elect to accompany survivors to the hospital directly after an assault has occurred. If you wish to become a crisis intervention advocate who also does hospital accompaniments there is no additional training, as the same 36-hour training course will also help you prepare for in-person crisis counseling, support and advocacy.
You are not required to have any previous training in crisis work for either one of these opportunities. An advocate must only have a strong desire to help those in need of SASS services and a positive attitude. Listed below is an outline of what a hotline or hospital advocate would do to support a survivor.
The Roles of a SASS Advocate:
- Empower survivors
- Provide emotional support
- Provide information about referrals when requested or appropriate
- Provide information about options
- Accompany Survivors to hospitals or police stations when requested and when appropriate
Upcoming advocate training: September 2014
Help keep our children safe.
As a volunteer educator for SASS you will be working directly with students grades K-12 in both Rockingham and Strafford Counties. You will also have the opportunity to present to adult learners or other community groups. The programs you will present have topics ranging from personal body safety and healthy relationships to images in the media. If you had previous public speaking experience it would help you feel more comfortable speaking in the classroom, regardless a training will be provided for any education volunteers. The topics of training are listed below.
Education Training covers issues such as:
- Understanding the core concepts of our program
- Facilitation skills
- Learning and practicing the activities and scripts used in the schools
- Learning puppeteer skills (for those interested in the elementary program)
- Handling awkward moments in a classroom
- How to respond to a disclosure of sexual abuse
Volunteers also spend at least one morning observing presentations prior to presenting material themselves.
Volunteers will not be sent into the classroom on their own. SASS programs are designed so that volunteers are accompanied in the classroom by a staff member or experienced volunteer.
It is possible for potential volunteers to observe a presentation in order to decide if they would like to commit to training. Observations are scheduled by simply calling the office and speaking with an Education staff member to set up a date and time.
Society for SASS Outreach Committee
Help spread the word.
We have a unique opportunity for you to educate your community, help keep children safe, and inform the public of the important services that SASS provides. By being a member of our Outreach Committee and an representative for SASS, you will be directly impacting the lives of those affected by sexual violence and actively fighting to put an end to it. The time commitment will be an average of 3 hours per month, and be split between a monthly meeting and outreach events of your choosing.
You will be participating by appearing at information tables, community events, fundraising events and a number of other activities to help spread the word about the agency and our services. If you are outgoing, talkative, and passionate about building a healthy and safe community, this opportunity is for you!
*Please email email@example.com for more information about training to join the Society for SASS Outreach Committee as well as for the complete list of training dates.
Get hands-on experience.
Intern opportunities are available in our Client Service, Education and Prevention or Outreach programs. Completion of the agency's in-house training program and a 2 semester (16 hours per week) commitment is required. If you are interested it is possible to do a shadowing day at SASS to see if it would be a productive placement for your internship. Please contact us with any questions.