The only service of its kind in Bergen County, healingSPACE: A Sexual Violence Resource Center operates the countywide 24-hour sexual assault hotline. The hotline is staffed 24/7 by trained advocates to assist in crisis intervention, information and referrals, and to support anyone who has questions or is looking for information related to the issue of sexual violence. Anyone can call regardless of when the assault has occurred, whether hours or years ago.
To reach an advocate through our 24-hour hotline, please call 201-487-2227. Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing can email us at: [email protected]
Our trained advocates are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to accompany survivors through the medical, legal, or other proceedings associated with sexual violence. Whether it is as a member of the Sexual Assault Response Team, to the hospital or local doctor’s office for a wellness exam, or to the local police department or court, advocates are there to provide emotional support and inform survivors of their options. Although advocates do not speak for or on behalf of the survivor, they are there to help ensure that individuals have a voice in their aftercare process. To ask about this service or to request that an advocate accompany you to any of these types of appointments, please call our 24-hour hotline at 201-487-2227.
Sexual Assault Response Team
The Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) is a free, coordinated community response to assist a survivor in the aftermath of a recent sexual assault. It has been designed to offer a compassionate, victim-centered approach while collecting evidence that can be vital to the investigation and prosecution of the crime. There are three members of the SART team available to a survivor:
Forensic Nurse Examiner (FNE): A FNE is specially trained in forensic evidence collection. She conducts a head to toe exam and collects evidence to assist in the prosecution of the crime. Medications to prevent Sexually Transmitted Infections and pregnancy resulting from the sexual assault are also offered to the survivor. The FNE does not treat injury; anyone needing medical attention will be seen by the attending physician in the local Emergency Department.
Law Enforcement: A local police officer and/or detective from the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office’s Special Victims Unit are available at the request of the survivor to conduct an investigation. In most cases of sexual assault, the choice to prosecute is left up to the survivor.
Confidential Sexual Violence Advocate (CSVA): Trained healingSPACE advocates are available to assist the survivor throughout the SART process. Advocates keep information confidential and are there to empower the survivor by providing emotional support, information, and referrals. Follow-up with a trained advocate is also available in the days following the SART process.
SART is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Individuals who can access SART must meet the following criteria:
For more information about SART or to discuss your options, please call our 24-hour hotline at 201-487-2227.
If you have recently been sexually assaulted and would like to activate the team, call 201-226-5620 during business hours; or 201-646-2700 after hours and on weekends. You can also report to the Emergency Department at the following hospitals:
Local/Bergen County Resources
|262-HELP (NAMI Bergen County)|
|Alternatives to Domestic Violence|
|Bergen Community College Resources website|
|Bergen County Health Counseling Center|
|Bergen County Office of Victim Witness Advocacy|
|Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office|
|Bergen County SANE/SART Program|
|Bergen County Special Victim’s Unit|
|Bergen Family Center|
|The Center for Alcohol and Drug Resources|
|Center for Hope and Safety|
|National Coalition of 100 Black Women, INC, Bergen/Passaic Chapter|
|National Council of Jewish Women Bergen County Section|
|Ramapo College – Womens Center|
|Women’s Rights Information Center|
SART Participating Hospitals in Bergen County
|Englewood Hospital and Medical Center|
|Hackensack University Medical Center|
|Holy Name Medical Center|
|1 in 6|
|Centers for Disease Control: Sexual Violence|
|Men Can Stop Rape|
|National Center for PTSD|
|National Center for Victims of Crime|
|National Child Traumatic Stress Network|
|National Institute on Drug Abuse|
|National Sexual Violence Resource Center|
|Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network|
|Rescue and Restore (Human Trafficking)|
|Stalking Resource Center|
|Stop it Now!|
|USDOJ: Office on Violence Against Women|
|U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (Sexual Harassment)|
|Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers|
|Institute on Violence, Abuse, & Trauma|
|International Rescue Committee|
|International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies|
Your voice is a powerful tool
With it, you can raise awareness, raise funds and create positive social change in your community.
Add your voice to our Voices of Healing fundraising campaign-and let survivors know that they are not alone.
$25 purchases a “Dignity Kit” of new clothing and shoes for survivors to wear out of the hospital
$50 keeps the 24/7 hotline staffed for 1 hour
$100 provides materials to conduct a 40-hour training session for volunteer advocates who accompany survivors to the hospital, courthouse or law enforcement meetings
$250 provides 6 months of counseling sessions for a survivor
$500 provides a Prevention Workshop for 50 Bergen County youths
Help Survivors of Sexual Violence Have a Voice!
A survivor of sexual violence may need the support of an experienced counselor trained in sexual trauma who can help them process their trauma history and be a guide during their healing process. Our healingSPACE counselors are available for day and evening appointments to work with individual clients to help them identify and establish goals for counseling. Counseling is available for a small fee with a sliding scale as necessary. Clients must be at least 13 years of age (under the age of 18 requires parental consent for ongoing counseling) and a phone screening is required prior to intake. To find out more about individual counseling, please call 201-881-1733.
Isolation and disconnection are at the core of a survivor’s experience of sexual violence. Connecting with others who have had similar experiences can help an individual build relationships and trust. The group experience has been found to be a powerful healing tool, whether the history of sexual assault or abuse occurred recently or in the past.
All healingSPACE groups are facilitated by state licensed, Master’s level professionals and are free of charge. The Center currently offers the following groups:
For survivors of sexual violence and their loved ones, focusing on the non-traditional losses associated with surviving sexual violence.
This group is for the spouses and significant others of survivors of sexual violence.
This group is for adult men who have experienced sexual abuse as children.
This group is for adult women who have experienced sexual abuse as children and/or sexual assault as adults.
A phone screening and intake are required prior to joining a group. It is important that the group be a good fit for both the new individual and the existing group. For more information about our support groups, please call 201-881-1733.