If you’ve been sexually assaulted, Devon and Cornwall Sexual Assault Referral Centres (SARC) are there to help.
If you want the crime to be investigated, the sooner a forensic medical examination takes place, the better the outcome.
After seven days forensic evidence can no longer usually be gathered, although SARC can still help you in other ways.
If someone you know has been raped or sexually assaulted, it can be a very distressing and confusing time for you both. You can help to support the person who has been assaulted by:
- explaining what their options are and what happens next
- accompanying them to the Devon & Cornwall SARC or police station nearest to them (if they want to report it to the police – this is entirely their choice and they shouldn’t feel pressured)
- helping them to feel safe
- listening to them and supporting them through the recovery process.
Helpline: 0300 3034626
If you want to access support without involving the police or NHS, you can access First Light’s Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA) Service in Cornwall and Devon.
First Light employs experienced professionals who provide support and advocacy for victims of acute sexual violence and prolonged or historic sexual abuse.
It supports clients through any possibly criminal case, signpost to specialist organisations or support, or can simply provide a safe place to listen and support you.
Helpline: 03458 12 12 12
Safer Futures offers advice and support to men, women, young people and children impacted by Domestic Abuse, Sexual Violence and Sexual Abuse. You will be supported by experienced Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence professionals and advocates, who will help you access the most appropriate intervention and recovery services.
Helpline: 0300 777 4777
The Centre offers counselling for anyone who is being sexually abused, or has been sexually abused or raped in the past.
They offer options to talk to you on the telephone or in person, whichever you would prefer and are open Monday to Thursday from 9am to 5pm.
Helpline: 01872 262100