Herts Area Rape Crisis and Sexual Abuse Centre celebrates volunteers for their valuable contributions

The Herts Area Rape Crisis and Sexual Abuse Centre is a charity service run 'for women, by women'.

The Herts Area Rape Crisis and Sexual Abuse Centre is a charity service run 'for women, by women'. - Credit: HARCSAC

The Herts Area Rape Crisis and Sexual Abuse Centre has celebrated its volunteers for their valuable contributions to the community.

The charity, which was established 35 years ago, is run almost exclusively by volunteers and supports women over the age of 18 who live in Hertfordshire and have been raped or sexually abused at any point in their lives.

As part of this year's Volunteers Week the team enjoyed celebratory cake during a break in meetings.

One of the volunteers said: “After meeting survivors, I wanted to find out more about what help was available to help them. Herts Rape Crisis was the only local agency offering free counselling – After contacting them I decided I would volunteer in supporting the women of Hertfordshire.  I have been with the charity for almost seven years.” 

A charity spokesperson added:  “A good counsellor should be able to listen empathetically, use compassion and authenticity to form a relationship with the client in a non-judgemental way. They should also have respect for confidentiality, have patience and a genuine interest in others – I have a compassionate nature, which allows me to develop an empathetic connection with individuals and have been with the charity for just over two years.  I was recruited throughout the pandemic with training all via Zoom.” 

HARCSAC runs an annual training course for new volunteers, for further information please contact admin@hertsrapecrisis.org.uk or call 01707 276539. Based in Hatfield this all-female organisation continues to support women face-to-face, on the telephone and now video counselling. They also provide a well-used helpline service on 01707 276512 and are considering setting up group support sessions.