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University of Iowa News Release

April 4, 2006

Training Offered For Volunteers Who Want To Help Sexual Assault Survivors

The Rape Victim Advocacy Program (RVAP) will offer a free, 32-hour volunteer training session June 5 to June 17 for women interested in helping survivors of sexual assault in Johnson, Cedar, Iowa and Washington counties.

RVAP, which serves those four counties and the University of Iowa community, needs volunteers to staff two 24-hour crisis hotlines, including the local Rape Crisis Line and the statewide Iowa Sexual Abuse Hotline. Volunteers also provide in-person medical and legal advocacy in addition to support, and information to sexual assault victims.

Callers in the Iowa City/Coralville area are encouraged to use the local Rape Crisis Line -- 319-335-6000 -- for support, information and referrals if they are sexual abuse victims or loved ones of a victim. The Iowa Sexual Abuse Hotline is a 24-hour, toll-free number -- 1-800-284-7821 -- that Iowa residents can call for support, information and referrals.

Training, which is open to any woman over the age of 19, consists of 32-hours of instruction and discussion covered in eight sessions held between June 5 and June 17. Weekday training sessions generally run from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. and Saturday training sessions are from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Volunteers will learn fundamentals of sexual abuse/assault, including facts about sexual abuse, victim impact and offender typology, and legal, medical and social issues. They also will receive experiential training to develop skills needed to work with survivors, their family members and their friends. Volunteers are also invited to become involved in the planning and execution of community awareness events and other RVAP activities.

For an informational packet and application contact RVAP at 319-335-6001 and provide your mailing address, or go to to preview the training schedule and download the application forms.

More information about RVAP is available online at

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

CONTACTS: Media: Stephen J. Pradarelli, 319-384-0007, ; Program: Lesa Key, RVAP volunteer coordinator, 319-335-6001,