Our volunteer advocates go through a 40-hour training after which they are Certified Volunteer Advocates in the state of Minnesota.
After completing training, our volunteers answer our 24/7 crisis line offering a caring voice to provide emotional support, referrals, and information for victims of sexual assault and other crimes. Additionally, volunteer advocates assist victims/survivors at the hospital during a sexual assault exam as well as law enforcement interviews.
Crisis line shifts are nightly from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. as well as weekend and holiday days from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Crisis line advocates are able to respond to crisis line calls from their homes.
When a volunteer has the crisis line, they are required to stay at their house the entire shift unless they are called out to respond to Saint Mary's Emergency Department. Volunteers will be trained to answer crisis calls, help with de-escalation, safety planning, and connecting callers to resources. Volunteers are also trained to respond out to St. Mary's Emergency Department to support a victim of Sexual Assault. Before volunteering all volunteers must take the free 40-hour Sexual Assault Training and pass background check.
Free 40-hour Sexual Assault Advocacy Training
- Typically held twice a year (Fall and Spring)
- Broken up into 10 weekday evening sessions (ex. 5:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.)
- Volunteers need to attend all sessions, and can make up two sessions if needed
Minimum requirements to volunteer
- Must be 18+ years old to volunteer
- Live within a 30-minute response time to St. Mary's Emergency Department
- Pass a background check
- Be able to complete the 40 Hour Sexual Assault Advocacy Training
- Able to take one shift per month
Interested in volunteering?
We are always looking for dedicated volunteers. Please fill out an application today!
Future in person training sessions will be held at the Olmsted County Government Center located at 151 4th St. SE, Rochester, MN. More information on upcoming dates to come.
Please contact our Volunteer Coordinator for more information on becoming a Certified Volunteer Advocate.