Chatline for victims of sexual violence and their support figures: development and pilot study
This project aims to make aid as accessible as possible to victims of sexual violence and their support figures. In a first phase the feasibility of a phone- and chatline was researched and a model was developed. Subsequently, the piloting of the chatline model was requested by the Belgian government. The piloting consists of two main parts. The first part holds the launching of a chat service for victims of sexual assault and their support figures. The chat service was launched on April 10th 2019 and aims to bring victims of sexual violence in touch with a SACC or other specialized caregivers. A feasibility study showed this service may especially be necessary for hard to reach groups such as men and adolescents who often face more barriers to seek help after sexual violence.
Via this chat service victims can tell their story anonymously and an attempt can be made to remove barriers to seek further help.
In the first stage the project focused on the Flemish speaking part of Belgium and offered only chat sessions in Flemish. Starting September 2019 a parallel chat service will be offered in French.
The second part of the project consists of a pilot study that is being conducted on the chat service. This pilot study aims to study the data to improve the access to the SACCS. A process evaluation will be conducted, aiming to describe the characteristics of its users and the services offered. Concluding, this chat service aims to inform the national upscale and potential international implementation of chat services for sexual assault care centers.
Federal Service of Employment, Work and Social consultation Institute for Equality of Women and Men Federale Overheidsdienst voor Werkgelegenheid, Arbeid en Sociaal Overleg Instituut voor de Gelijkheid van Vrouwen en Mannen
Jana Verplancke Sherien Holail Mohamed Freeke Matthynssens Emilie Berghmans Blanche Leblon Laura Keunebrock Ines Keygnaert
Institute for Equality of Women and Men Federale Overheidsdienst voor Werkgelegenheid, Arbeid en Sociaal Overleg Instituut voor de Gelijkheid van Vrouwen en Mannen