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Sexual Assault Response Team Starter Kit: A Guide for New SART Teams

Sexual Assault Response Teams (SARTs) play a powerful role in improving the collective response to sexual violence through increasing access to healing and justice. SART members typically include victim advocates, health care providers, law enforcement, prosecutors, and local human and social service organizations, as well as any other primary points of disclosure. Each of these members represent the diversity of experience and expertise specific to their community. SARTs that engage in systems change promote victim-centered responses to sexual violence through increased collaboration, education, and lasting improvements across disciplines.

Communities may have a number of reasons for forming a SART, including:

  • Meeting an identified need within the community
  • Fulfilling a funding requirement
  • Fulfilling a legislative mandate
  • Strengthening relationships between service providers
  • Formalizing processes and relationships that already are in place

SARTs are one strategy that communities can use to respond to sexual violence. SVJI believes that, through the work of SARTs, meaningful change in the response to sexual violence is possible. SARTs, at all stages of development, focus their efforts to prioritize victim/survivors’ needs, hold offenders accountable, and promote public safety.


How to use the SART Starter Kit

This tool is designed for communities that want to form or revitalize a multidisciplinary team. This team should be focused on increasing the efficacy of the local systems response to sexual violence and use a systems change process. In addition to guiding new team formation, established teams may find this kit a helpful tool for getting back to the basics.


Who Should Use It

This Starter Kit provides foundational knowledge and tools that can be used by anyone. This information is divided into three primary sections:

  1. Foundations
  2. Readiness
  3. Starting

Each section provides a brief overview of essential concepts, key questions to get the community thinking about implementation at the local level. Sections also contain a list of accompanying tools and resources in the Appendices to further advance the work of team formation and function.


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Last modified: 7/11/2022