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Building Skills for Sexual Assault Responders: Sexual Assault Advocate/Counselor Training Curriculum

To advance the treatment of victims of rape and sexual assault, OVC has provided strong leadership in the development of Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) programs and Sexual Assault Response Teams (SARTs). SANEs and SARTs have made a profound difference in the quality of care provided for sexual assault victims. This OVC-funded initiative developed an advanced training curriculum for sexual assault advocates and counselors to increase their understanding of sexual assault and treatment efficacy. The training, which has been delivered in 18 jurisdictions throughout the country, is available through OVC's Training and Technical Assistance Center. In addition, a downloadable online version, the Sexual Assault Advocate/Counselor Training (SAACT) Curriculum, was produced and released in July 2007.

This training is intended primarily for sexual assault advocates, counselors, volunteers, or staff at rape crisis centers. However, nurses (including SANEs), physicians, law enforcement officers, and mental health practitioners who assist sexual assault victims may also benefit. Focusing on crisis intervention rather than long-term counseling, the training deepens participants' understanding of the problem of sexual assault and the roles of an advocate or counselor. Through case studies, role playing, and other interactive exercises, participants gain real-world skills to assist sexual assault victims effectively and sensitively. For more information, visit the OVC TTAC Web site.

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