From Our Blog
Guest column: Join the Cumbee Center in raising awareness of sexual violence
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Whether you are marching to Take Back the Night or Wearing Denim for Denim Day, efforts to combat sexual assault are strongly emphasized in April. Cumbee Center, together with sexual assault crisis centers around the state, recognizes Sexual Assault Awareness Month during the month of April.
Sexual assault remains a critical public health issue and is often referred to as murder of the soul. It is one of the most catastrophic crimes in our society today. Aside from physical injuries, survivors of sexual violence endure lifelong pain from emotional and psychological trauma. The staff and volunteers of the Cumbee Center provide compassionate, confidential and trauma-informed services to victims like these each day and could give testimony to the emotional and psychological scars that last well beyond the physical agony.
Cumbee Center combats sexual violence on many fronts. Foremost, if a person experiences a sexual assault and seeks medical attention, an advocate will meet them at the emergency room to provide support that is nonjudgmental before, during and after a forensic exam. Cumbee Center exists to believe, empower and educate. In doing so, we listen, validate reactions and promote healing. Largely, Cumbee Center provides services to survivors and their families well after an experience of sexual trauma.
In addition to hospital advocacy, Cumbee Center offers court and legal advocacy, case management, counseling, emergency shelter, community outreach, prevention education and a 24-hour crisis hotline. The key components to all services and actions by Cumbee Center follow a survivor-centered approach that seeks to empower the survivor by prioritizing their rights, needs and wishes.
In April, we ask that you join in our efforts to break the silence and bring awareness to the critical public health issue of sexual violence. Awareness ribbons are frequently used to show support or raise consciousness for a cause. This month, Cumbee Center has adorned Laurens Street in Aiken, Georgia Avenue in North Augusta, Main Street in Barnwell and courthouse square in Edgefield with teal awareness ribbons to represent the need for social change, a culture that reduces the tolerance of abuse and the support we offer survivors.
Visit us at cumbeecenter.org or follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more information. If you or someone you know are in need of our services, an advocate is available to assist you twenty-four hours daily. The crisis hotline number is 803-649-0480.