Annual Report 2009-2010
ur mission is to reduce the trauma and risk of sexual violence and child abuse. Project Sister Family Services (PSFS) continues to pursue an aggressive, two-pronged approach to the problem of sexual assault and child abuse: providing services to those in crisis with extensive follow-up treatment, and specific sexual assault outreach and prevention education programs. By alleviating the devastating effects of sexual violence and child abuse, PSFS helps to end the cycle of family violence that occurs through generations by helping survivors to heal. PSFS prevention education programs empower people of all ages to avoid dangerous situations in the hope that they will never experience the trauma of sexual assault or child abuse. All services are provided in both English and Spanish. PSFS is the only, state-designated provider of sexual assault crisis and prevention services in our service area. This year PSFS served a total of 50,620 residents of our 27-city service area located in the eastern portion of Los Angeles County and the western portion of San Bernardino County. We are pleased that an additional 12,570 individuals visited our web site, www.projectsister.org, for a total of 19,684 visits.
Sexual assault crisis intervention programs include:
- 24-hour HOT-LINE, offering immediate crisis assistance. PSFS responded to 818 crisis hotline calls, 127 from youth under age 18.
- Accompaniment/Advocacy, in which trained volunteers provide support and advice to survivors of sexual violence and child abuse at the hospital, police station, and during court appearances. PSFS provided 255 hospital, court, and/or police station accompaniments to survivors, 120 of whom were under the age of 18.
- Information and Referral Service, providing information about medical services or reporting an assault, and referral to appropriate agencies.
- Professional Counseling Services, available to female and male survivors, significant others, and non-offending family members. Our counseling services help survivors to overcome the traumatic effects of sexual violence and child abuse. PSFS counselors served 239 individual clients (209 female and 30 male) with 2,865 hours of individual counseling.
- Counseling for Children who are survivors of sexual and other physical and/or emotional abuse. Our youngest clients attend counseling sessions that help them to heal, recover their childhoods and regain the confidence to pursue happy and productive futures. Non-offending family members of sexually abused children are also treated, enabling them to support their children more effectively while managing their own anxieties. Parents of physically abused children are also provided with treatment, frequently giving PSFS counselors the opportunity to heal parents who have experienced abuse in their own lives. In this way, we make a significant contribution toward ending a cycle of family violence that can persist for generations. Of all individual counseling clients, 36% were under the age of 18.
- Support Groups, for adult and teen survivors of sexual assault and molestation. PSFS provided 18 support group clients with 221 hours of group therapy sessions.
Sexual assault outreach and prevention programs include:
- Community Education Programs, provided for organizations at their request. PSFS reached 21,403 unduplicated individuals through 42 community education presentations and health fairs.
- Senior Safety Program, in rape awareness and personal safety, provided to local senior centers and group residential settings. Seniors are taught safety measures that decrease their vulnerability to sexual assault, robbery, burglary, and financial exploitation. PSFS served 764 individuals in 36 senior education programs.
- Adult Prevention Education, in rape awareness and personal safety, provided to residents of our service area. PSFS served 2,762 individuals in 152 adult prevention education presentations.
- Teen Prevention Education, involving rape prevention programs for junior and senior high school students. Topics include date and acquaintance rape, personal safety and sexual harassment. This year 21,528 unduplicated teens attended 503 presentations.
- Young Adult Prevention Education, involving rape prevention programs for college students. Topics include date and acquaintance rape, personal safety and sexual harassment. This year 772 unduplicated college students attended 31 presentations.
- Young Child Education, a program in which children age 5 to 10 receive instruction focused on the difference between “good and bad” touch. They also learn to how to ask for help if they have been touched in a “bad” way. This year 1,331 children participated in 8 presentations in school settings.
- Self-Defense Education, in which instructors teach self-defense and other personal safety skills. This year 730 individuals learned self-protection skills through 49 self-defense classes.