The Advocate - January 2019







Government Shutdown Affects Nonprofits
Rape Crisis of Cumberland County was recently featured in an article, describing how the federal grants our organization depends on have stopped due to the government shutdown. Our staff has been furloughed since Friday, January 4, and while they were given the option to stay home or seek other employment, they continue to show up for victims. One of our board members has set up a Go Fund Me to help with expenses, if you can donate anything, it's very much needed.

Deanne is back!
Deanne Gerdes has returned as Executive Director after a 3 month sabbatical made possible by a grant from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.  



Walk A While in Her Shoes
Friday, March 22, 2019 | 7-10 pm | Bright Light Brewing Company
Registration is open, y'all! Get your tickets now and strut your stuff. Walk begins in front of Encore Academy and this year will end at Bright Light Brewing Company. Hang out after the walk for raffles, prizes, food trucks, beer, and entertainment! Follow the event on Facebook for updates. The support we receive from this event allows us to provide free advocacy, counseling and support to more than 600 survivors of sexual violence every year.

Does your organization want to support us, too? We are still looking for sponsors, as they are the primary funds raised for RCCC during this event. The sponsorship form can be downloaded here. Sponsorship levels can get your logo on our shirt and even registration coverage for men walking in the event!

Rape Sensitivity Training
February 2 and 9, 2019 | 8am-5pm | FTCC Continuing Ed Center
OR
April 6 and 13, 2019 | 8am-5pm | FTCC Continuing Ed Center

This course is designed to increase awareness in the community of rape and its effects on the victim and society. You will learn special counseling techniques that are used to help rape victims. We will also cover medical, law enforcement, and legal procedures.  Those interested in becoming a volunteer victim advocate will also spend 4 hours at RCCC learning about our specific organization and what we do.

In an average month in 2018, Rape Crisis answered 250 crisis line calls, met 14 victims at the emergency room (including an average of 4 minors), assisted with 8 e-files for Domestic Violence Protective Orders, added 20 new victims to our log, gave 5 in house counseling sessions, and appeared in court 8 times.

In June 2018 we proudly became one of two first pilot sites for Cumberland County to begin e-filing, a program designed to helps victims prepare and electronically file for emergency protective orders. This enables victims to have a comfortable, safe space to help them navigate the protection order process while also being assisted and supported by our trained advocates.

RCCC was also enlisted to help in the movement to #EndTheBacklog and thanks to the many people involved, including the Fayetteville Police Department as well as local and state-wide elected officials, we have a number of successes to celebrate. Fayetteville has tested ALL of it's rape kits, and cold case after cold case has been turned hot due to FPD's initiative (including the arrest of a man believed to be the Ramsey Street Rapist). The 2017 legislation that was approved and funded for all North Carolina police departments to inventory all their untested kits, found over 15,000 (3,820 were untested because allegations were deemed unfounded, and 2,741 kits were tied to cases involved in courts, leaving over 7,500 kits that should have been tested). 2018 legislation was then introduced to require the state crime lab to develop a tracking system, to test old kits and implement a protocol to test new kits in order to avoid a future backlog. While the legislature did not include funding for this legislation in their budget, Attorney General Josh Stein was able to secure a $2 million grant that will cover the cost to test 1,400 kits and the tracking system has been implemented.


Michael Boose has been a friend to RCCC for years! Michael is the only person who has not only posed every year we have had a Walk Awhile in Her Shoes calendar, he has walked in every walk and has sponsored each year.  Mr. Boose’s support has meant so much to not only the staff at RCCC but the victims we serve.




Matthew Higginson has been a volunteer advocate for over 3 years.  He graciously gives his time off as a paramedic to respond to the hospital in another way, by advocating for victims of sexual violence.