Closer Look: RAINN’s Volunteer Program

In honor of RAINN’s 25th anniversary, each month we’ll be taking a closer look at the people and programs that are essential in our work to help survivors today and every day. This month, we’re shining a spotlight on RAINN’s volunteer program.

Hundreds of individuals across the country volunteer with RAINN each year to support survivors and their loved ones on the National Sexual Assault Hotline—in addition to our many full-time support specialists.

“There’s no one ‘typical’ volunteer. These amazing folks come from all different backgrounds, are all ages, and decide to volunteer for many different reasons,” says Sydney Solan, National Sexual Assault Hotline Volunteer Program Manager.

Many volunteers are survivors themselves who know how crucial appropriate support and resources can be to healing and want to ensure that other survivors know that they are not alone. Others choose to volunteer because they are passionate about ending sexual violence and want to contribute in a direct way. Regardless of why someone chooses to volunteer, their work is crucial to providing survivors with the support they deserve—especially with demand increasing.

“When there’s national news relating to sexual violence, we see a huge increase in the number of people contacting the hotline,” says Solan. “Over the last 25 years, our services have steadily grown and we continue to see an outpouring of people who need support. We help an average of 838 survivors and their loved ones each day.”

That’s why RAINN is growing its network of dedicated volunteers across the nation, who we train in victim-centered, trauma-informed response to ensure that everyone has access to this essential service.

Volunteering isn’t just about helping survivors of sexual violence and their loved ones. RAINN is working hard to make sure that each volunteer receives guidance, enrichment, and support so they can learn and grow—whether they devote a short time, or end up staying for 20 years, as some have.

“Every day I am so humbled that I have the privilege of working with so many incredible volunteers who use their creativity and compassion to help others. It shows such true passion for the cause—that someone would take the time to volunteer and would choose RAINN,” says Solan.

To learn more about RAINN’s volunteer program and to see upcoming trainings near you, click here.

“Volunteering is a way to embody your values. It’s a way to take action about something that matters to you. It’s a way to be part of something greater.”

Eight out of 10 sexual assaults are committed by someone who knows the victim.

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