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RAINN: Reaching Out to Spanish-Speaking Victims of Sexual Assault

  • by
  • September 29, 2010
  • 4:00 pm
RAINN: Reaching Out to Spanish-Speaking Victims of Sexual Assault

Note: This is a guest post from the wonderful people at RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) about their new project to bring sexual assault services to Spanish-speaking victims.

Every 2 minutes, someone in the U.S. is sexually assaulted. Nearly half of victims are under age 18, and 80 percent are under 30. Moments after an attack, in the midst of confusion and chaos, most victims ask themselves - what do I do now?” That is where RAINN comes in.

RAINN is the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization, and has helped over 1.4 million people take their first step towards recovery through the National Sexual Assault Hotlines.

In 2007, RAINN received the Technology Innovation Award from NPower for the best use of technology by a nonprofit with the Online Hotline. RAINN’s unique integration of technology in the Online Hotline has allowed RAINN to more effectively fulfill its mission by providing crisis support to those who are more comfortable seeking help online.

Each month, Pepsi contributes 1.3 million dollars to worthy causes across the country through the Pepsi Refresh Project. This September, RAINN is competing for a $250,000 grant from Pepsi to expand our Online Hotline to Spanish-speaking victims of sexual assault.

While 28.1 million Americans speak Spanish at home, Spanish-speaking victims of crime remain among the most underserved groups in the United States. Hispanic/Latino victims are less likely to seek help or report victimization, largely due to language barriers. When a language barrier exists, family members or children often act as translators, at times inhibiting the victim’s ability to speak openly. These barriers can also isolate children who are experiencing abuse from a parent or relative.

After an attack, it is imperative that victims have immediate access to support and resources in their native language. Right now, there is no free, secure and anonymous place to go for Spanish-speaking victims.

If RAINN won the $250,000, we will be able to create a Spanish-language version of the Online Hotline, hire and train bi-lingual hotline staff to provide services to victims, create a culturally relevant training program for bi-lingual hotline staff, and create resources that meet the specific needs of Spanish-speaking victims of sexual violence.

By removing the language barriers that often inhibit Spanish-speaking victims of rape from getting the immediate help that they need, RAINN’s Online Hotline would help thousands more victims each year.

If you’d like to help, you can VOTE for RAINN three times a day until September 30th and then spread the word.

  1. Vote Online:
  2. Vote by text: text 102552 to 73774
  3. Vote through Facebook: install the app once and vote from Facebook

Just 60 seconds is all it takes to join the fight against sexual violence. Help RAINN provide help to those who need it most.

RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) is the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization and was named one of “America’s 100 Best Charities” by Worth magazine. RAINN created and operates the National Sexual Assault Hotlines (800.656.HOPE and in partnership with more than 1,100 local rape crisis centers across the country. The hotlines have helped more than 1.4 million people since 1994. RAINN also carries out programs to prevent sexual assault, help victims and ensure that rapists are brought to justice. For more information about RAINN, please visit

“RAINN is the one place that I can turn to when I feel out of control. When I feel broken and have nowhere to turn. When my friends and family are at a loss for words to help, RAINN is always there. You have helped me through the trenches of my memories and for that I am grateful. Thank you!”

-Stephanie, hotline caller

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photo credit: RAINN

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6:25AM PST on Nov 27, 2010

Help our Spanish speaking friends who are victims of rape.

5:35AM PDT on Oct 10, 2010

Great stuff, keep up the good work!!

3:41AM PDT on Oct 3, 2010

What a laudable effort. Hope such efforts get going for all people.

10:56AM PDT on Oct 2, 2010

Unfortunately, I´ve got this too late. It´s IOct. 2nd and the voting ended on Set. 30th.
How can I give support to RAINN? I am a native Spanish speaker. Although I live in Mexico, I think I can help.

1:02AM PDT on Oct 2, 2010

keep up the great work.

2:04AM PDT on Oct 1, 2010

Wonderful group doing wonderful work.

7:37PM PDT on Sep 30, 2010

every 2 minutes? that's unthinkable.

6:51PM PDT on Sep 30, 2010

Thank you so much for posting this article! I think that it’s so important that we acknowledge that there is a large Spanish community within the United States. I think that the US should be more multilingual. You see schools in Europe that teach students third and fourth languages, and the students actually apply what they learn. I recently graduated from high school, and I feel like too many students take foreign language classes just to fulfill their requirements. Most of the students won’t try to apply what they know to their real lives. It’s a necessary tool to reach out to people that are different from ourselves. This is especially true for social services. I completely agree with RAINN and their efforts to reach out to more people who otherwise might not seek help.

5:39PM PDT on Sep 30, 2010

muchos gracias Emily, Good Luck RAINN, God Bless.

5:21PM PDT on Sep 30, 2010

I really hope they win this money to help assist assault victims.

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