I applaud Emily Parkhurst for talking about her sexual assault experience (“I was raped. Talking about it helps,” Jan. 30) and for defining factors that make sexual assault difficult to discuss. She may never know the positive impact that column will have on other rape survivors.

For teenagers, the Sexual Assault Crisis Center has drop-in programs in every public high school in Androscoggin County. An advocate is available at the school on a regular schedule to talk to students who need assistance and support, and can be called to the school at other times if a student has an immediate need for assistance. Students can get information about this program through their guidance office.

The Crisis Center also provides drop-in programs at two elderly housing sites — Barker Mill Arms and The Roak Block, allowing people who are elderly to talk with an advocate right at their housing complex. In addition, a weekly drop-in program is offered at the Lewiston Public Library for support and assistance to people who are homeless and have been victims of sexual assaults.

Yes, talking about it helps. And we are here … and there … to listen.

Marty McIntyre, director

Sexual Assault Crisis Center, Lewiston

Editor’s note: The Sexual Assault Crisis Center provides support and assistance to people affected by sexual assault. Advocates are available 24 hours a day by calling 1-800-871-7741 or 1-888-458-5599 (TTY).

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