Needed_ Volunteer Sexual Assault Advocates 2021 (4)

Volunteer Advocate Program

Volunteer Application

As a non-profit we depend on the help from our volunteers. Volunteering as an advocate is both a challenging and rewarding way to give back to the community. Your help as a volunteer advocate makes a difference to end sexual violence and support victim/survivors.

Purpose of the Volunteer Advocate Position: The purpose of a trained volunteer advocate is to support and advocate for the rights and self-defined needs of survivors of sexual violence and their friends, families, and other concerned persons.  This advocacy is provided on the Central MN Sexual Assault Center’s (CMSAC) 24-hour crisis phone line, as well as in person at area hospitals, law enforcement centers, and other community locations.

Requirements:

  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Successfully complete the Minnesota-mandated 40-hour volunteer advocate training (including CMSAC’s pre and post interviews)
  • Commit to taking a minimum of two crisis line shifts per month – Volunteer advocates use their personal cell phones and work from home during shifts. Volunteer shifts are either 16 or 24 hours long, and occur during the evenings and on weekends.
  • Commit to volunteering as an advocate with CMSAC for a minimum of a 12 month period
  • Attend monthly advocate meetings and other specified trainings as advised by the Sexual Violence Advocacy Program Supervisor
    for the purposes of continuing education and case consultation
  • Must live in our service area of Benton, Stearns, Sherburne, and Wright counties

Responsibilities:  The CMSAC volunteer advocate, under the supervision of the Sexual Violence Advocacy Program Supervisor, will be asked to:

  • serve as a first responder for CMSAC’s 24-hour crisis phone line (calls will be directed by an answering service to your phone)
  • provide crisis intervention, support, and sexual violence education to victims and their friends, families, and other concerned persons
  • provide victims with accurate information about their medical, law enforcement, and legal options
  • accompany victims to local hospitals and law enforcement centers when victims are seeking medical care and criminal justice assistance, and provide support during these proceedings
  • help victims assert their rights and advocate for the responsive and trauma-informed treatment of all victims of sexual violence and their friends and families
  • work as a team with multidisciplinary professionals, (e.g., law enforcement, medical, and legal personnel) to provide the best care and services possible for victims of sexual violence and their friends and families
  • provide resources and referrals, as needed, to survivors of sexual violence, their friends, families, and other concerned persons
  • notify the Sexual Violence Advocacy Program Supervisor of all crisis line activity, complete appropriate paperwork, and follow other policies and procedures as discussed during training
  • assist in other volunteer duties as needed

Reasons to Volunteer as an Advocate:

Volunteering as an advocate is both a challenging and rewarding way to give back to the community.  Many of our volunteers have identified that empowering survivors to heal from the crisis of sexual violence is a very fulfilling experience.  CMSAC’s volunteer advocacy program will help individuals grow personally and professionally in many ways.  Through participation in our volunteer advocate program, individuals will develop and refine:

  • crisis intervention skills
  • verbal and written communications skills
  • skills in working with a team of multi-disciplinary professionals, (e.g., law enforcement, hospital staff, social workers, and other services providers)
  • social action skills
  • knowledge of all forms of sexual violence
  • an understanding of sexual violence as a product of rape culture

The Sexual Assault Advocate certification looks great on a resume too! The skills gained in both the training and practice are transferable skills to any job where you are working with people!

40-Hour Training Information:

40-hour sexual assault advocate training is typically offered by CMSAC. We have developed a primarily online training due to COVID-19 and will be providing this training to be open three to four times a year. The link to the application to become a volunteer advocate is located below and can be submitted at any time.  Please contact Andrew akaehler@cmsac.org and/or Bree at btheising@cmsac.org for more information about CMSAC’s volunteer advocate program and for more information about the next 40-hour sexual assault advocacy training.

Please call 320-251-4357 and/or email Andrew at akaehler@cmsac.org and/or Bree at btheising@cmsac.org for more information*

Volunteer Application

Advocate Training Manual

Applications can be submitted to:

Central MN Sexual Assault Center, 15 Riverside Drive NE, St. Cloud, MN 56304

akaehler@cmsac.org

btheising@cmsac.org

Phone: 320-251-4357/Fax: 320-251-4670