The SOAR Collective, and members of Survivors Know-Midwest Anti-Violence Solidarity Circle began collaborating in October 2022 with the goal of learning more about the experiences of current and former anti-violence advocates. We Deserve Better has become shorthand for our collective work and a call to action.
We asked advocates to complete an anonymous assessment between the end of November 2022 and the middle of January 2023. For the purpose of this survey, we defined "advocate" as anyone who currently or had recently worked at victim service agencies.
The assessment aimed to answer two key questions:
What are the primary challenges advocates experience while working in the anti-violence field?
What changes can anti-violence agencies make to support advocates & survivors, and improve systems?
We received 265 responses from 31 US states and 2 US territories. The majority of respondents (80%) are still employed at an anti-violence agency. Nearly half of the respondents (48%) currently work at or most recently worked at a dual agency, and almost a quarter of respondents (24%) work at or did work at a rape crisis center (RCC).
Anti-Violence Advocacy Summit
This three-part virtual summit occurred on April 21, June 2, and July 7 in 2023. The goal was to unite advocates to explore the findings from a needs assessment collected in winter 2022. Recordings, slides, and recap posts from the summit are available to access below. A full report will soon be available.
Over the next few months, we commit to:
Draft a final report using findings from the assessment and takeaways from this summit
Based on needs and requests discussed in breakout rooms and shared on the survey, do our best to connect folks to resources and/or create containers for this work to continue
Continue to intentionally create spaces for us to build community and connect with our peers