Q. What Do Your Advocates Do?

A. Advocates provide culturally competent in-person accompaniment for survivors of gender-based violence to access health care, report offenses to RCMP, or attend court so that survivors are not alone during the aftermath of trauma. Advocates offer emotional and practical support, and bridge survivors to community resources. In partnership with the Island Health Forensic Nurse Examiner Program, Advocates provide 24/7 accompaniment to Cowichan Valley hospitals for survivors seeking urgent forensic medical care.

Q. What are your Advocates' qualifications?

A. Our screened Advocates complete 100+ hours of specialized gender-based violence training over the course of one year. Training is grounded in feminist theory with a trauma-informed survivor-centered approach exploring rape culture, psychology of victim blaming, affirmative consent, impact and neurobiology of trauma, intimate partner sexual assault, colonization, equity and inclusion, marginalized communities, vicarious trauma, community engagement through social action, and collaboration with criminal justice, health care, and Indigenous service providers.

Q. Does the offense have to be reported to police?

A. No. Survivors choose whether or not to report relationship violence or a sexualized assault to RCMP. Survivors are in control of their own story. Advocates honour the survivor’s right to navigate decision making. Survivors are never pressured, encouraged or expected to disclose an offense to anyone. Through the Advocacy program, survivors have a place to ask questions and explore options.

Q. Who can access your services?

A. We provide support, advocacy and accompaniment to survivors 13+ of all gender identities, 2SLGBTQQIA+ and non-binary community members. We support youth by consulting and creating a coordinated response with local youth serving agencies and/or school counselors.

Q. Is there a cost for your service?

A. No. Advocacy services, crisis and non-crisis accompaniment, counseling and trauma recovery groups are free and confidential. If a survivor does not have transportation for accompanied appointments and feels unsafe to walk alone in the community, we can provide in-town taxi service to and from accompanied appointments.

Q. How do I refer someone to your program?

A. Providing our information allows survivors to make contact with us on their own terms. If a survivor is uncomfortable, we welcome 3rd party inquiries to discuss current circumstances and risk factors. To reduce barriers, we can meet survivors with their support people at their preferred public location (doctor/counselor’s office), or the survivor can invite their support people to attend an initial visit with them.

Q. I have more questions!

A. To learn more about the Sexual Assault Response Program and Warmland Women’s Support Services Society, please contact Program Coordinator Kendra Thomas 250-710-8177

Warmland Women's

      Support Services Society 

      Sexual Assault Advocacy Centre

The Sexual Assault Advocacy Centre is a response to sexualized violence that reflects not only the needs of survivors of all genders but one that engages Community to become more than a bystander.


Sexual assault is a physical assault that is sexualized. It is about power and control, not sexual attraction. Survivors are not responsible for anticipating, causing or stopping the violence.



Services include:

  • Crime Victim Assistance
  • Trauma counseling
  • Trauma recovery groups
  • Trauma-informed mindfulness  programs emphasizing body-centered awareness



Enhancing existing services and     supporting social responders, the  program includes an intensive        volunteer Advocate training program grounded in feminist theory and     response-based trauma informed practice. Training focuses on essential skills for survivor-centered crisis and non-crisis accompaniment and advocacy.                                                    

Sexual Assault Advocate

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