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Access & Inclusion – Our Achievements!

In 2021 Shetland Rape Crisis was awarded funding through the Tampon Tax Fund, which enabled the recruitment and appointment of an Access & Inclusion Project Worker to:

  • Improve access to support for survivors of sexual violence and their supporters.
  • Proactively work to identify and overcome barriers to support.
  • Engage and collaborate with survivors to identify and address their needs.

The project ran from May 2021 until June 2022 and had a focus on increasing Shetland Rape Crisis’ support capacity, the accessibility of the service, and its reach, for survivors of sexual violence in Shetland, and particularly for survivors from marginalised groups. We set ourselves an ambitious goal - by 2025, we want to see access and inclusion in everything we do at all levels of the service, where every survivor we support feels accepted for who they are and welcomed into a safe, accessible, and inclusive space.

Person shouting into a megaphone

As we reach the end of the project period, we’re excited to share a few highlights of our achievements over the past 12 months:

  • Our 2021 campaign for 16 days of activism explored the theme of women in leadership, with window displays in local public areas celebrating international and local women leaders.
  • Rebranding of the service as the Compass Centre included the development and launch on the new name, website, signage, information leaflet and related resources.
  • We teamed up with Shetland Women’s Aid, Shetland Arts and Islesburgh Drama Group to stage and film ‘Fragmented,’ a play by Stephanie Pagulayan, which explores the impact and felt trauma of childhood sexual abuse in adult life.
  • Shetland Pride 2022 takes place in July, and the Compass Centre have an information stand at the pride village, as well as hosting a pride coffee morning at the centre.
  • Developing staff resources and understanding for working with survivors with different cultures, backgrounds, and abilities.
  • Development of OWL, our volunteer group for survivors, ensuring that the voices of survivors are at the core of our work, shaping our priorities and helping us to improve our service.
  • Implementation of translation and interpreting services for survivors who speak different languages, including British Sign Language and braille.
  • Physical improvements to the building to make our toilets more accessible.

We continue to be passionate about promoting access and inclusion both for our workforce and for survivors of sexual violence; our ongoing access and inclusion agenda comprises the conversion of an outbuilding to a new client space, development of garden area as an accessible space for volunteers, staff and survivors to enjoy, as well as working towards silver chartermark accreditation with LGBT Youth Scotland.

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