Your Experience Matters: Capturing victims' interactions with responders

Blue text bubble on left that says, "I could tell the advocate believed me because…" and green text bubble on right that says, "The cop gave me a cup of coffee. He listened to me. He said he would…”

The Response Matters

How a responder reacts to a victim/survivor of sexual assault matters. Supportive actions or words mean a lot. Negative interactions may halt progress towards getting the help one may need and want, or worse, re-traumatize the victim/survivor. So, we want to learn:

What did they say?

What did they do?

What helped?

How could they improve?


Help Improve the Practices of Law Enforcement and Victim Advocates

You are invited to share your experiences of interacting with law enforcement and/or victim advocacy. What you share will help us better understand what responders can do to support a person after a sexual assault. To get the full picture, we need to hear from as many adult victims/survivors as we can so we can create and promote promising practices for law enforcement and advocacy. Our end goal is to create a better, more supportive experience for victims/survivors when they interact with the people who respond to sexual violence in their community.


How You Can Help

The Sexual Violence Justice Institute @ MNCASA is interviewing adult victims/survivors of sexual violence in rural places. Please consider contributing to this important project:

    • SHARE: Do you have an experience of feeling believed or supported to tell?
    • FORWARD: Can you help spread this call to rural victims/survivors who have had a positive experience with law enforcement or advocacy? Forward this call to your professional networks or post it on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or your website. We can send you the official website message or a sample social media post.


Our Commitment

Participants will be interviewed by a seasoned advocate and local resources will be shared, as requested. It is critical that this project collect the voice of adult victims/survivors that represent the range of experiences, identities, and languages present in rural places. Language and cultural accommodations are available on request. Responses will be anonymous and combined with the responses of others to create training and resources to improve the practices of advocates and law enforcement.



The Sexual Violence Justice Institute (SVJI) is a national technical assistance and training provider on sexual violence and multidisciplinary teaming/sexual assault response teams. SVJI is housed within the Minnesota Coalition Against Sexual Assault.

While the everyday work of SVJI is to improve the multi-disciplinary response to sexual violence, we center our work in the experiences of victims/survivors. SVJI believes that hearing the voices of victims/survivors of sexual assault, in their various contexts, is key to understanding the barriers they experience and developing ways to improve the practice of responders. This project is one of the ways we keep victims/survivors at the center. Learn more about SVJI at

The Sexual Violence Justice Institute @ MNCASA is partnering with responders and victims/survivors in rural places across the country and territories to explore what the key skills, principles, and knowledge are that advocacy and law enforcement need to have to provide an effective sexual assault response. What emerges will inform important principles and improved practices.



Please direct any contacts to Jessica Jerney, Evaluation and Research Coordinator, at 651.288.7458 or


This project is supported by Grant No. 2017-TA-AX-K057 awarded by the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women.



Community Shares Logo
Rainbow Flag © MNCASA All rights reserved.  |  161 St. Anthony Ave., Ste. 1001, St. Paul, MN 55103
Site Map  |  Privacy  |  Serving Minneapolis - St. Paul metro area, Rochester, Duluth, St. Cloud,
Mankato, Fargo - Moorhead, Bemidji, Brainerd, Grand Rapids, and counties in Greater MN

Individuals pictured are models and are used for illustrative purposes only.