News

Oxfordshire Sexual Abuse and Rape Crisis Centre to pause helpline due to lack of funding


Oxfordshire Sexual Abuse and Rape Crisis Centre to pause helpline due to lack of funding 

Oxfordshire Sexual Abuse and Rape Crisis Centre (OSARCC) has announced the temporary closure of its Listening Service, which comprises a telephone helpline, text message and email response service for survivors of sexual violence in Oxfordshire. 

OSARCC is the only non-statutory, accredited specialist service for survivors of sexual violence in Oxfordshire. Demand for OSARCC’s services has increased significantly, with a 45% increase in referrals in the last year.    

The Listening Service has been in operation since 1979. Over the last three years it has responded to 1,200 calls, 1,300 text messages and almost 500 emails from Oxfordshire residents. It will be paused from 28 July 2023 for a period of 12 months whilst alternative funding is sought.  

In the meantime, survivors of rape and sexual abuse will be able to access the new 24/7 support line run by Rape Crisis England and Wales, which operates via phone on 0808 500 2222 and online chat via https://247sexualabusesupport.org.uk 

OSARCC CEO, Lauren Kendall, said: “This has been a very difficult decision, particularly as it involves saying goodbye to some valued members of staff. While this was never a choice we wanted to make, it means that we can focus on ensuring that more survivors get access to the counselling we provide, which we know is critical to their recovery process.  

“I want to thank the staff and volunteers who have provided support through the Listening Service over the years. They will always be part of the OSARCC community and we are looking forward to continuing to work with our volunteers during this next chapter for OSARCC.” 

Array

Keep up to date, sign up to our newsletter

Escape to Google