More than 120 organizations in Victoria are partners with GivingTuesday in 2018. (GivingTuesday/Google Maps)

Victoria Sexual Assault Centre launches $55,000 in 55 days campaign on GivingTuesday

Capital Regional District charities and organizations partner for post-Black Friday movement

After the crowds of sale shoppers have torn through retailers in North America, unpacking their trove of treasures successfully brought home after yet another Black Friday and Cyber Monday, then comes GivingTuesday.

For the Victoria Sexual Assault Centre, GivingTuesday on Nov. 27 is the day they launch their annual fundraiser. Last year, their 50-day fundraising campaign raised nearly $2,000 more than the $50,000 goal. Now, to keep up with cost increases and demand for services, the fundraiser lasts 55 days for $55,000, specifically for the Victoria Sexual Assault Clinic.

“This year the area of greatest need for us is our clinic,” said Carissa Ropponen, the communications manager of the Victoria Sexual Assault Centre. “We want to ensure that clinic will stay open, so we really wanted to focus this year on that need, especially as we’ve been receiving more requests for support.”

READ MORE: Surge in requests for help, reports of sexual assault since #MeToo

The clinic opened nearly three years ago, partnering with Island Health and police detachments to centralize services in a private location for the victims of sexual assault. Anyone can access the clinic 24 hours a day, all year ‘round, for the sexual assault response team, medical and forensic exams, help reporting to police, crisis support and counselling.

Before the clinic, sexual assault victims could only get immediate care from the hospitals’ emergency room or the police station.

“We weren’t reaching all of the people we could reach. For many people, a hospital or an emergency wait room is not the best option for them, and they won’t go or they might show up and leave if the wait is too long,” she said. “They’re afraid to go to the police station or are apprehensive, which is understandable after having experienced a traumatic assault.”

Since 2015, demand for service has increased by 154 per cent. The Victoria Sexual Assault Centre has been serving Greater Victoria for more than 35 years, and a sexual assault clinic has been “a dream of the centre and community” for 25 of those years, Ropponen said. But the clinic doesn’t receive core funding, and to keep the dream alive, the majority of their financial support comes from individual donations.

“As more people hear about the clinic, more people feel they can reach out for support directly after a sexual assault, we have more people calling us wanting to access the clinic,” Ropponen said. “We want to make sure that service remains available to them.”

On Nov. 27, all donations to the Victoria Sexual Assault Centre — up to $2,000 — will be matched by local sponsors.

For the fifth year in Canada, GivingTuesday is a movement in response to the hordes of consumerism, with 6,000 Canadian charities, businesses and organizations asking everyone to give back.

In the Capital Regional District, more than 120 organizations are partners with GivingTuesday. In 2017, 1,650 poutines were sold for charity in Victoria.

This year, the University of Victoria also hosts its sprinkles-related fundraiser for GivingTuesday, where students give donations in return for hot chocolate (with whipped cream and sprinkles, of course!).

“The world has seen a particularly challenging year in 2017, from natural disasters to divisive global events. One way to reunite is by celebrating our shared values: empathy for the challenges of others and our desire to help those in need. Millions of simple acts of giving, all added together, amount to real impact,” reads

READ MORE: ‘Tis the day and the season for giving


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

WATCH: Our Place Therapeutic Recovery Community turns into a ‘place of healing’

500 volunteers, 120 businesses worked to transform View Royal community

A party for 11 pups and their adoptive families in Beckwith Park in Saanich

The coonhound siblings reunited at a barbeque on Saturday

HarbourCats bats hot in home return

Victoria squad downs Yakima Valley Pippins 17-2

Victoria veteran receives French Legion of Honour, becoming knight of France

Ted Vaughan was a pilot in the 408 “Goose” Squadron in WW2

Witness the passion and fire of flamenco in Victoria this July

Seventh annual Victoria Flamenco Festival features free and ticketed performances downtown

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Canadian high school science courses behind on climate change, says UBC study

Researchers found performance on key areas varies by province and territory

Six inducted into BC Hockey Hall of Fame

The 26th ceremony in Penticton welcomed powerful figures both from on and off the ice

RCMP investigate two shootings in the Lower Mainland

Incidents happened in Surrey, with a victim being treated at Langley Memorial Hospital

CRA program to help poor file taxes yields noticeable bump in people helped

Extra money allows volunteer-driven clinics to operate year-round

Recall: Certain Pacific oysters may pose threat of paralytic shellfish poisoning

Consumers urged to either return affected packages or throw them out

How a Kamloops-born man helped put us on the moon

Jim Chamberlin did troubleshooting for the Apollo program, which led to its success

Sexual harassment complaints soaring amid ‘frat boy culture’ in Canada’s airline industry

‘It’s a #MeToo dumpster fire…and it’s exhausting for survivors’

Most Read