Independent Sexual Violence Advisor (ISVA)
If you have reported or are thinking about reporting rape or sexual abuse, it’s likely that you will have a lot of questions and may need more information before you can decide what to do. The Independent Sexual Violence Advisory Service (ISVA) gives you free and confidential access to trained advisors who can offer practical help and support, whether your case has been reported to the police or not.
An ISVA is completely independent of all other agencies. Their only interest is in supporting you. They will work with the various agencies on your behalf, to make sure you have all the relevant information about your case and ensure that your voice and opinion is heard throughout the investigation.
An ISVA can support you whether you choose to report to the police or not. It is their role to make sure that you have the information you need to make an informed choice. An ISVA can support by::
- Making sure you have the information you need to decide what to do about your experience of abuse
- If you choose to report, keep you updated on the progress of the case and liaising with the police officer and Crown Prosecution Service on your behalf
- Providing emotional support and assistance with practical issues
- If the case goes to court, arranging for a pre-trial visit, and support you with what to expect in the build up to trial
- Providing support during the trial and in the period afterwards to help you move forward
- Work on your behalf to ensure that your rights under the victim’s code of practice are met
- Provide support to access counselling
Rape Crisis England and Wales (RCEW) is the National Umbrella organisation for specialist rape crisis centres. The National Service Standards (NSS) are provide a quality assurance framework that enables services to demonstrate how their services are provided within professional frameworks that prioritise safety, governance, empowerment and continuous improvement.