Sexual Assault Response Program (SARP)

Program Description

The Sexual Assault Response Program (SARP) is a team of trained responders who provide support and advocacy for people of all genders (ages 13+) who are survivors of sexual assault.  

What SARP offers

  • Someone who will listen without judgement
  • Advocacy and information about medical and justice options, as requested
  • Third Party Reporting (TPR) – anonymous reporting to the RCMP
  • Accompaniment at the hospital, RCMP detachment, and court
  • Planning for safety and healing
  • Follow-up care
  • Referrals as needed
  • Community education and collaboration

We are here for you. We hear you. We believe you.

What is Sexual Assault?

Sexual assault is any form of unwanted sexual contact.
This includes unwanted touching, kissing, and penetration.

Sexual violence is an act of power and control, it is not about sexual desire.

Sexual assault is never justifiable.

What is consent?

Consent is a clear, voluntary agreement between participants to engage in sexual activity. Consent is freely given, meaning it cannot be coerced. Consent can be taken back or ended at any time and can only be given if all people involved understand specifically what it is they are consenting to.

After an assault…

There is no one way to be or one thing to do after a sexual assault.  It’s common to feel a range of feelings and responses, like anger, shock, fear, or shaking, though each person responds in a unique way. Know that your feelings are valid and are your body’s way of processing what happened.

You are not alone, and you are not at fault. We are here for you.

There are confidential supports available that can help you through this time. You have choices in what supports your access, if any at all. 

You know what the right decision is for you.

You have options

Disclosure Only. You can tell someone what happened so you can access emotional support and services if you’d like. You do not need to report to police or speak with anyone you don’t want to.

Medical Assistance.  You can access medical services to identify and treat any physical injuries and access medication to address the risk of sexually transmitted infections and/or pregnancy.

A Forensic Medical Exam. This is a medical exam specifically for survivors of sexual assault and/or relationship violence where forensic evidence is collected with your consent. This option can be useful if you would like to report the assault to police at some point. The forensic exam is accessible for up to 7 days after an assault and gives the choice of 3 options of care:

  • Medical Care – Involves medications and bloodwork based on your needs. No RCMP report and no forensic samples are collected.
  • Medical Care and Forensic Exam – Includes medical care as in option 1, documentation of physical injuries, and forensic samples are collected. The forensic samples are stored for one year, so survivors have time to decide if they want to report. Documentation is held forever. No RCMP involvement.
  • Medical Care, Forensic Exam, and Police Report – Includes medical care, documentation of injuries, forensic sample collection with reporting to police and handing forensic samples over that day.

Report to the RCMP. You can make a statement to the police which will initiate a criminal investigation. You can choose to have support worker with you when you report to the RCMP. There is no time limit for when you can make a report.

Third Party Report. You can make an anonymous report to RCMP through a designated third-party, like SARP. This option allows you to access support, to share your story in a safe way, and to inform the police about the crime without them knowing your identity. Call SARP for more information on Third Party Reports.

SARP is here to help you navigate your options
and support whatever choices you make.

Contact

For more information on our Sexual Assault Response Program,
or if you would like to become a volunteer SARP responder,
you may reach the program coordinator directly at

250.726.5480
sarp@wccrs.ca