Since 1985, the Sexual Violence Center has been serving youth and adult victim/survivors of sexual violence 12 years of age and older. We work in Hennepin, Carver, Scott and other metro counties and have offices in Minneapolis and Chaska.
More and more Minnesotans every year turn to us during one of the worst times in their lives. We meet them with a range of services to get them through the crisis and trauma caused by sexual violence, including:
24-hour crisis support telephone line staffed by our trained advocates,
Individual, in-person counseling giving intensive, directed support to victims and survivors,
Support groups for victims and survivors as well as friends and family of victims,
Crisis support in hospitals: we are there for victims of sexual assault throughout their evidentiary examinations,
Legal advocacies and legal clinics through which we advocate that victim/survivors have the resources they need to file restraining orders, navigate the criminal justice system and get connected to legal representation.
SVC provides services to victim/survivors at no cost.
In addition to our direct services support work, SVC challenges the systems, attitudes and beliefs that perpetuate violence. We encourage and support those who want to join us to make change. SVC engages the community to address sexual violence by empowering people to become sexual assault advocates and by providing the training, organization and supervision to do this work. We also go into schools, other agencies and general community populations to continue breaking the silence about sexual violence. We coordinate two multi-disciplinary teams that focus on ensuring that systems that respond to sexual violence (i.e. judicial, law enforcement, medical, etc.) prioritize the needs and perspectives of victims.
What new functionality we are looking for
We have desperate need to update our old website. The website as it currently appears it the result of several volunteers' input, but at the present time we have no webmaster to update and unify the site.
This website is a main way we connect with three vital groups of people:
1) victim/survivors of sexual violence who Google us and need to know more about our services
2) donors and potential donors
3) potential volunteers (also, who Google us)
We need to refine it as a communication tool targeting each of these groups of people.
How the new functionality will help
Hopefully through a new website we will reach more people with our services, and communicate better with potential donors (which will help our agency provide this increased volume of service).
Our major problem is lack of awareness amongst the general community to our existence: people only know about us when they need us. A more updated site, with a more strategic use of key words will help boost our Google ranking and direct more people in crisis to our site.
We need to update our content, that need has been there for a few months. But rather than just updating our content using the same framework we have right now, we'd rather do a complete overhaul to make our website a more effective tool for victim/survivors to use when they are reaching out for help (especially for the first time).
We would also like to make our website more relational - with active links to partner organizations (domestic violence shelters, suicide crisis lines, etc.) we routine work with and refer to, and also donor agencies that help keep us running. We would also like to incorporate more research and rape-related news on our site (in some way where we can control for content). We would also like to link to our SVC Facebook account and SVC Twitter feed, in a live way.
How our organization will use the technology
Who will use the technology
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