Avalon’s advocates serve as a liaison and support to survivors, ensuring their needs are met and rights are honored. Advocacy services may include assisting a survivor and/or their family with navigating the many resources that may address challenges they are facing as related to their experience with sexual violence or otherwise.
- Legal advocacy: Includes ensuring survivors are knowledgeable and understand their rights and options concerning the criminal justice process; accompaniment to law enforcement and prosecutor interviews; court accompaniment; help drafting victim impact statements; assistance filing for personal protection orders.
- Community-based advocacy: Includes researching and connecting survivors with other service organizations for additional resources and assistance (i.e. food pantries/resources; clothing resources; assistance with rent and utilities and other financial resources, etc.)
- Shelter/housing advocacy: Includes aiding survivors in securing safe shelter; locating and connecting with organizations that provide services related to securing long-term housing and related resources (i.e. orgs. that help with security deposits); assistance completing paperwork related to applying for housing resources; etc.
- Transportation: Transportation can be a huge barrier for many survivors in Metro Detroit to access resources and services. Avalon provides transportation for survivors of sexual assault to accommodate appointments, meetings, and other forms of care related to their experience with sexual violence (i.e. individual and group counseling, law enforcement/prosecutor interviews, follow up medical care, and court related matters). We use Lyft, Uber and cab services as transportation options for survivors.
- Victim Compensation: The Crime Victim Services Commission (CVSC) Compensation Program may help sexual assault survivors who sustained a personal physical injury, and their immediate families with the financial costs of the crime they experienced. Costs that may be eligible include medical treatment, counseling, funerals, crime scene clean-up, grief counseling and loss of income or support not paid by other sources. Avalon’s advocacy staff assist survivors in completing the application for CVSC.