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«Association of Alberta Sexual Assault Services ANNUAL REPORT 2013-2014 Working Together for an Alberta Free From Sexual Violence AASAS Annual Report ...»

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Association of Alberta

Sexual Assault Services



Working Together for an Alberta Free From

Sexual Violence

AASAS Annual Report 2013-2014

Providing leadership, coordination, collaboration and a unified voice on issues of

sexual abuse and sexual assault.

AASAS Annual Report 2013-2014

Lisa Oracheski President

Organizational Overview Page 4

Brad Cunningham Vice President AASAS Core Beliefs Page 5 Bill Walker Treasurer Judy Hoad Secretary AASAS Member Agencies/Services Page 6 Tracy Noullett Director Message from the Leadership Page 7 Marilyn Fleger Director AASAS Human Resources Page 8 Sharlyn White Director AASAS Governance Page 9 Sonia Wilson Director AASAS Special Projects Pages 10-11 Debra Tomlinson Chief Executive Officer AASAS Research Page 12 AASAS Monthly E-News Flash Page 13 AASAS Funders Page 13 Glimpse of Financial Statements Pages 14-15 Northland Building Suite 700, 910 7th Avenue SW Calgary, Alberta T2P 3N8 Phone - 403.237.6905 ext. 230 Email - mailbox@aasas.ca Website - www.aasas.ca AASAS Annual Report 2013-2014 The Association of Alberta Sexual Assault Services (AASAS) is a non-profit, registered charitable organization that began operations in

1995. As a provincial umbrella organization, AASAS provides leadership, coordination, and a unified voice on issues of sexual assault and sexual abuse while increasing recognition, support for and access to sexual assault services in Alberta.

Our Vision An Alberta free from sexual violence.

Our Mission To provide leadership, coordination, collaboration and a unified voice on issues of sexual abuse and sexual assault.

The Role of AASAS The AASAS Member Agencies/Services are responsible for day-to-day, front line deliveryof services within their local communities and

regional areas. As a provincial support organization, AASAS focuses its efforts in these key areas:

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 We believe anyone affected by sexual abuse and sexual assault has the right to access effective, affordable, and timely services that are distinct and specialized.

 We believe everyone has the capacity and resiliency to recover from sexual abuse and sexual assault.

 We believe victims of sexual abuse and sexual assault are not to blame and perpetrators must be held accountable.

 We believe society minimizes the impact of sexual abuse and sexual assault on individuals and that minimization has devastating outcomes for survivors.

 We believe society minimizes the crime of sexual abuse and sexual assault, and this must change in order to effectively address and prevent issues of violence.

 We believe services addressing sexual abuse and sexual assault need to be delivered in an inclusive, respectful, and equitable manner regardless of ethnicity, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation, or ability.

 We believe there is a need for increased recognition and support for existing and emerging sexual assault services in Alberta.

 We believe education and awareness initiatives need to be targeted at everyone.

 We believe prevention initiatives are not to be targeted to survivors or potential survivors but towards perpetrators and potential perpetrators as well as those who can intervene.

 We believe that treatment is a form of prevention because healthy individuals and healthy communities break the cycle of abuse.

 We believe in the need for treatment and for greater access to treatment for perpetrators of sexual abuse and sexual assault.

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AASAS Annual Report 2013-2014 Starting as a grassroots organization and now positioned as a provincial leader, AASAS is continuing to gain strength, support and recognition for the role it has taken to bring awareness of the issue of sexual violence and the work that has been done by sexual assault centres/ services throughout our province in support of individuals and families impacted by sexual violence.

In 2013, AASAS established a solid funding base for future provincial development, increased our AASAS Member Agencies, added a new staff member to help move our AASAS projects forward and continued to develop strong partnerships with the provincial government.

We have exciting opportunities abounding for AASAS in the up and coming year. We will continue to grow AASAS’s presence across Alberta with our Member Agencies/Services as well as our partnerships with the provincial government and other key stakeholders. We know that by working together we can make a difference in the lives of individuals, families and communities to create an Alberta free of sexual violence.

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AASAS Annual Report 2013-2014 AASAS Chief Executive Office AASAS announced the appointment of Debra Tomlinson as Chief Executive Officer to the organization in May 2013.

Ms. Tomlinson was pleased to assume the role and was thankful for the hard work, dedication and contribution from acting CEO Danielle Aubry through the two years that Ms. Aubry led the organization from the departure of the former Executive Director in January 2011.

“Danielle’s passionate and dedicated leadership along with her innovation, strategic direction and continued work in fostering solid government relationships played an integral role in where we as an organization are today.“ Ms. Tomlinson brings a wealth of experience and knowledge with her thirty plus years of working in senior leadership roles in the not-forprofit sector. She is committed and passionate about the issues of sexual abuse and sexual assault and has devoted much of her career in working towards ensuring individuals impacted by sexual and domestic violence have access to services, support, healing and recovery programs.

“I am honored to have the role of leading AASAS, and am excited to work with the Board of Directors, AASAS Member Agencies/Services and Government partners. I am confident that together we can increase specialized sexual violence support services to all individuals impacted throughout Alberta.

These are exciting times and I am honoured to be a part of this growing movement to end sexual violence.” AASAS Strategic Initiatives Coordinator Corinne Ofstie was hired in January 2014 as the Strategic Initiatives Coordinator.

Ms. Ofstie works closely with the Chief Executive Officer as well as with the AASAS Membership to help manage AASAS projects and initiatives and support the collaboration in working towards its provincial strategic framework and organizational goals.

Ms. Ofstie joined AASAS after successfully piloting the Coordinator position for the Calgary Domestic Violence Collective. She brings experience and ingenuity around coordinating collaborative community response initiatives and collective impact.

AASAS Annual Report 2013-2014 AASAS Board Governance Up until the fall of 2013, the AASAS Board of Directors was made up of representation from both Community Members and AASAS Member Agency/Services Executive Directors. With AASAS’s new role of disseminating funding dollars to sexual assault centres and services throughout the province, AASAS transitioned to a Board made up nine passionate and committed volunteer community members. This newly formed governance structure allows the AASAS Board to continue to provide strategic leadership and clear direction to the members to whom it is accountable.

AASAS Senior Leadership Committee AASAS Member Organizations provide day to day front-line delivery of sexual assault services in their local communities throughout Alberta.

In order to recognize and harness the invaluable knowledge and expertise of its members, AASAS formed a Senior Leadership Committee.

The Senior Leadership Committee is a sub-committee of the AASAS Board of Directors and consists of senior decision makers from all ten AASAS Member organizations. The committee acts as an advisory body to the CEO and AASAS Board and provides advice and expertise on issues as they relate to the delivery of sexual assault services throughout the province.

AASAS Annual Report 2013-2014 AASAS Sexual Violence Action Plan Last year, AASAS identified the need for a province wide strategic and coordinated action plan to address sexual violence in Alberta.

Throughout 2013-2014, AASAS brought together experts in the field, utilizing evidence based best practices and pulling from current and emergent research to develop a strategic and coordinated plan to raise public awareness of sexual violence in our province and reduce barriers for individuals to access specialized support and services.

Our provincial government partners generously provided advice and consultation to AASAS in the development of our plan and it is our hope that in turn the AASAS Sexual Violence Action Plan will act as a critical resource to inform the Government of Alberta’s Sexual Violence Framework.

Our goal is to have the plan finalized and launched in the fall of 2014.

AASAS First Responder to Sexual Assault and Sexual Abuse Train the Trainer Professionals and other first responders across Alberta share a common responsibility in providing adequate and timely supports for victims who have been sexually abused or sexually assaulted. A first responder can significantly influence the reporting decisions of survivors. With a positive non-blaming approach, supportive and strategic placed questions and accurate information about available services and the law, first responders can act as bridges to much needed services that foster healing and create access to justice.

In 2011, AASAS identified a need for cross-sector training and developed the ‘First Responder to Sexual Abuse and Sexual Assault’ two-day comprehensive adult education curriculum. This training outlines the knowledge and skills necessary for helping professionals to assess, screen and respond effectively to disclosures of sexual assault/abuse.

In the 2014-2015 year we will be developing a Train the Trainer curriculum as well as building an infrastructure to support the sustainability and accessibility of this training program and ensure AASAS approved First Responder Training is available in all parts of the province.

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AASAS, Lloydminster Sexual Assault and Information Centre (LSAIC), Cold Lake Victim Services and Bonnyville Victim Services approached the Ministry of Health to request additional resources to provide these services and in January 2012, funds were granted, enabling initial implementation of a pilot project to begin April 1, 2012. The goal of the pilot project was to increase access to specialized counselling services for victims of sexual abuse and sexual assault in Region 7.

Through the mentoring and support of LSAIC and a very successful first phase of development, the initiation of phase two began October 1, 2013 with the focus on increasing the number of client referrals. Substantially, this involved a reallocation of resources to develop and expand the role of the Project Coordinator; obtaining a core office space in the community of Bonnyville; and expanding marketing and promotion activities to include professional and public education.

Standardizing Sexual Assault Crisis Response Best practice in sexual assault response is well documented and states that having a specialized team is critical to successful and empowering care and subsequent healing.

Though we have Sexual Assault Response Teams in Calgary, Red Deer, Lethbridge and Edmonton, AASAS believes that all communities in Alberta need access to a coordinated collaborative multidisciplinary response.

Working from a community development model, AASAS will address the development of a coordinated community response to recent sexual assault in five selected communities in Alberta. AASAS will hire a full-time contract staff to lead this initiative, with the project beginning in the fall 2014.

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1. Surveying the Landscape: Sexual Violence Plans from Around the World Created in partnership with Shift: The Project to End Domestic Violence, this report surveys the scope of sexual violence locally, nationally and internationally as well as addresses factors that both prevent and contribute to sexual violence. The report highlights the best available research evidence in the area of sexual violence primary prevention.

2. Primary Prevention of Sexual Violence: Preliminary Research This report was created with Shift: The Project to End Domestic Violence. The report focuses specifically on primary prevention strategies for sexual violence, with a particular focus on sexual assault. While acknowledging that primary prevention research in this area is still in its infancy and therefore somewhat limited, this report pulls together the most current thinking from experts in this field.

3. Child Sexual Abuse: A Cursory review of Risk and Protective Factors for Victimization and Perpetration The following report provides an overview of risk and protective factors for both child sexual abuse victims and perpetrators and provides recommendations for consideration.

4. Clinical Models of Treatment for Trauma Experiences and Symptoms Specific to Sexual Abuse and Sexual Assault (2013) This scan of the literature (2005-2012) was undertaken to locate clinical models of treatment for trauma experiences and symptoms specific to sexual abuse and sexual assault looking at current models, best practices and needs assessment for future development.

5. Sexual Violence Service Needs in Rural and Remote Areas In 2006, AASAS authorized a literature review on existing North American rural models of service delivery, and created: Sexual assault services in Alberta: A framework of service delivery for sexual assault survivors living in rural, remote and northern communities (Lamont, 2006).

More recently, the Sexual Assault Response Committee (SARC) in Southeastern Alberta built on the AASAS research and had a researcher conduct a scan on what has been done to address rural and remote area service needs using a gender based analysis and exploring reasons for underreporting in rural areas; challenges to rural survivors in seeking help; and best or promising practice collaborative service delivery models for sexual violence in rural communities.

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