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Herts ISVA Service - One YMCA

An ISVA is an Independent Sexual Violence Advisor, a client focussed advocate who can support you after an incident of sexual violence or abuse. We are not part of the police, NHS or any other public service. We are a Registered Independent Charity that support survivors of sexual violence.

How can we help?

Although support from your ISVA is tailored to you, it may include some of the following:

  • Provide emotional and practical support
  • Help you to understand what has happened to you, so you can identify and prioritise your needs, and work towards recovery – your ISVA will do this by conducting a thorough risk and needs assessment tailored to your needs
  • Help you to access organisations that will aid your recovery, such as counselling, sexual health clinics, etc
  • Offering practical, accurate advice and support in relation to your safety, health and wellbeing
  • Providing information on different areas, such as the law, consent, vulnerability and accessibility, protective behaviours and wellbeing
  • Work with other organisations to achieve the best possible outcome for you
  • Act as a single point of contact on your behalf, such as explaining your feelings and needs to family and/or professionals, to make sure you feel heard, understood, and that your needs are being met as much as possible
  • Ensure that you are aware of all available options, so that you can make informed decisions for yourself, such as deciding if you want to report to the police
  • Ensure that, if you choose to make a formal police report, you are kept informed and supported before, during and after court
  • Ensure that as the case progresses, you are updated regularly by liaising with the police, Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and any legal representatives on your behalf
  • Support you at police appointments, CPS, legal representative appointments
  • Arrange pre-trial visits and support you at court

Who we work with:

If you have experienced rape, sexual assault, child sexual abuse or sexual exploitation recently or in the past and you live in Hertfordshire then we can help.

Our service is accessible to all regardless of age, gender, race, ethnic origin, religious belief, disability or sexual orientation.

Additionally we some have specialist ISVAs to support with:

  • Children and young people
  • Males
  • Trafficking and Exploitation.

How to get in touch:

You can make a self referral to the ISVA Service or you can refer on someone’s behalf if you are a professional. Alternatively you can phone us on 0300 002 0003. The service operates on Monday- Friday 09:00- 17:00. We try to answer calls within office hours. Outside of these hours or if we are unable to answer your call please leave us a message and we will return your call as soon as possible.

If you are in immediate risk of harm please call the police.

If an incident has happened in the last seven days you may have the option to have a forensic examination which can help to preserve any evidence. This will take place at a Sexual Assault Referral Centre (SARC). You can contact them directly here.  Herts SARC – Home * Attach photo of SARC logo*

Following your examination, the SARC will also discuss aftercare for you including emergency contraception, sexual health or additional support. They can also refer you to our service (Herts ISVA Service) if you would like this.

Download our referral form

We support victims of all sexual violence, abuse or assault through trafficking or other exploitation, including:

  • Rape
  • Sexual Assault
  • Sexual Harassment
  • Child Sexual Exploitation
  • Harmful Practises

Although not an exhaustive list, some identified areas of exploitation include prostitution, escort work, pornography.

We accept referrals from all agencies as well as self-referrals directly from clients.

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