FARMINGTON – The Sexual Assault Victims’ Emergency Services is looking for those who have been thinking about becoming a volunteer or who would like something extra in their life that is educational and rewarding.

The 24-hour Rape Crisis Hotline is dependent on its volunteer advocates. SAVES provides the necessary training to become a helpful support person for those who have been affected by sexual violence.

No previous experience is required. The course seeks to increase awareness around sexual assault issues in society and to develop skills in crisis counseling. It teaches participants how to empower themselves and others who have been the victim of sexual assault.

Trained advocates are prepared to staff their 24-hour hotline and to help and support individuals and their loved ones on the road to recovery. Advocates will have the use of a pager while they are on-call and would be reimbursed for expenses. Ongoing supervision will be provided.

The next training will start on Feb. 7 and run from 6 to 9 p.m. each Tuesday, except for holidays and school vacations. Two Saturday classes will be held on March 18 and April 8 to participate in a counseling skills lab and to practice role-playing. The training will conclude by May 9. All sessions will be held at the SAVES office.

Persons must be 18 years or over to apply. The course is available free to those who will volunteer with SAVES. UMF credit may be available to qualified students in psychology, community health or women’s studies.

For more information and/or an application, call, write or e-mail Pamela Adams, director of client services, SAVES Inc., PO Box 349, Farmington, ME 04938; 778-9522 or [email protected]

SAVES is a United Way Agency and serves all of Franklin County. The 24-hour hotline number is 1-800-871-7741. Local cell phone users should call 778-0110 to access the hotline.

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