Sexual Assault Support Services Recruiting Volunteers

RENO, NV -- It's hard to face a crisis when it happens to you. Fortunately, there are people in town who can help you through trying times and you can help make a difference in someone's life.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice's National Crime Victimization survey, someone in the U.S is sexually assaulted every two minutes.

"If you care about people and you want to give back, and if you have time in your schedule and maybe your friends have said 'you're a really great listener' or 'I always know I can come here for help,' that's really all we need because we give you all the tools you need to be a great advocate," Justine Hernandez, Prevention Education and Outreach Specialist, said.

Volunteers are the backbone to this organization. It's part of Northern Nevada's Crisis Call Center, a non-profit organization that offers 24-hour victim support.

"It can be challenging, but it's so rewarding on top of that, really you get back so much more than you give," she added.

The Sexual Assault Support Services program is in need, it's a service Kayla Ortiz never thought she had what it takes to be part of.

"I was terrified. I didn't really think I'd be able to do it. The thought in my head... I just got really nervous," Ortiz said. "It was kind of like one of those big events like graduating or getting married, you just never thought you'd go out."

She's been a volunteer for a year and says after her first time meeting with a victim, she was hooked.

"It was a rush, I couldn't go right back to sleep, I was just charged with energy. Your mentors you can call at anytime if it's three in the morning at anytime," she said. "Knowing that there was someone to talk to made me feel supported too."

Volunteers are asked to meet sexual assault victims face-to-face and help guide them through an exam process.

"She looked at me and said thank you, and i said oh for what?" Hernandez said of a client she met. "She's like, 'oh you don't know this, but I've been affected by this kind of assault and I remember there was an advocate coming to meet me and I don't remember their name and I don't remember their face, but I do remember what they gave me and they gave me that message of hope."

Letting victims know they're not alone.

"Those little moments of kindness that really go along and help people," Ortiz said.

Volunteers are asked to commit at least one year of service and three 12-hour on-shift calls per month. They're also offered extensive 74-hour training to make sure they have all the tools they need to feel comfortable and to be successful.

The next training day is October 9Th.

If you're interested in volunteering, fill out the application below.

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