Looking for Volunteers....

The Union County Rape Crisis Center is looking for dedicated individuals who are interested in helping survivors of sexual violence.  Our next Advocate training is slated to take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays from April 4th through May 25th, 2017.
What are the requirements?
  • Resident of Union County
  • 18 years of age or older
  • Valid U.S. driver's license
  • Personal (own) means of transportation (i.e. a car)
  • Participation in an informal interview between 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., Monday thru Friday
  • Successful completion of Advocate training which includes attendance at all sessions
  • Commitment to volunteer for a period of at least one year
  • Commitment to signing up for at least three hotline shifts per month
  • Regular attendance at monthly volunteer meetings (evening)

*If you meet these requirements and are interested in interviewing, kindly phone us at (908) 233-7273 or email rcc@ucnj.org.

Featured Advocate of the Month

Featured Advocate of the Month
Amy B.
June 19, 2012 was one of the most important days of my life. After months of training to become a Confidential Sexual Violence Advocate, it was graduation day! I knew I wanted to give back and serve my community in some way, but I had no idea of the impact that this journey would have, reflecting back almost three years later.

Being an Advocate is one of the most challenging yet most rewarding things I’ve ever done. When I say it’s a challenge, I don’t mean that it is difficult knowing what to do during a hotline call or in-person accompaniment. Even if I don’t have all the answers in the moment, my Advocate training has given me the protocols and skill set to help me think on my feet and assist a survivor to the best of my ability. A consultant is always a phone call away, so I’m never going at it alone. Plus, our monthly Advocate meetings provide an additional forum for discussion and to support one another.

The real challenge involves the heart. Advocacy is not something that just anyone can do. It requires you to reach deep within yourself, to have the ability to put aside your own personal issues, preconceived notions, and beliefs, to have empathy in the face of another person’s trauma. Being truly present for a survivor and having the ability to empower her or him with the knowledge to make informed decisions. Bearing witness to the resilience and light of the human spirit in the midst of tragic circumstances is a privilege. It has changed me.

When it comes up in conversation that I voluntarily assist survivors of sexual assault, it tends to get quiet. Rape is a topic that is not easy to talk about. But I’ve found that once you open the dialogue and share information, it leaves an impression that people take with them. It is alarming that 1 in 5 women and 1 in 71 men in the United States have been raped at some point in their lives. In the face of such staggering statistics, I know that I alone cannot solve the problem of sexual violence. However, during my years as an Advocate, I’ve really started to feel like I’m a part of something bigger than myself. To quote Peter Gabriel, “You can blow out a candle, but you can’t blow out a fire. Once the flames begin to catch, the wind will blow it higher.” This is a testament to the belief that ideas can produce social change. Besides my hotline shifts, I’ve been especially fortunate to participate in public outreach events on behalf of the UCRCC, as well as assist in training a new class of Advocates. In both situations, being able to connect with people from all walks of life has been empowering. It gives me hope for a better future.

When I embarked upon my training, I never imagined I’d gain so much while helping others. I have learned how to be more empathetic and a better listener in my personal life. I have an incredible mentor in Tamara, as well as the other staff members. I have gained a supportive group of sisters. I never stop learning. I feel blessed to be a part of something so special, so necessary. If you’re thinking about volunteering, I can’t think of a better place to serve.