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Mission

It is estimated that every minute of every day in America, someone becomes the victim of sexual violence. The probability of an individual′s life being touched by this horrible crime is great. PASSAGES, Inc. (Prevention And Service for Sexual Assault through Guidance, Empowerment, and Support) was founded in 1980 as The Rape Crisis Center, and is dedicated to the provision of free and confidential services to the victims/survivors of sexual assault throughout Clarion, Clearfield and Jefferson Counties.

Whether a person is violently raped or touched inappropriately, PASSAGES can offer supportive counseling services to meet their immediate physical and emotional needs. Beginning with a toll-free 24-hour crisis hotline, staff and volunteers can help people make the journey from victim to survivor of sexual assault. Individual and/or group counseling, as well as medical accompaniment and legal advocacy are available to all victims/survivors and their family members or friends.

In addition to supportive services, PASSAGES is also dedicated to the provision of prevention services. Each year more than 6,000 people learn about reducing their risk of sexual assault through educational programs presented to area schools and community groups. From pre-school age children up through senior citizens, PASSAGES offers prevention programs based on the simple message of "say NO, get away and tell someone."

Confidentiality

Whether providing supportive or preventative services, one of the main concerns of PASSAGES is confidentiality. In Pennsylvania, sexual assault counselors, both professional and volunteer, cannot be compelled to release information regarding a victim/survivor without that person's permission. To qualify for these privileges counselors must have completed a state-mandated 40-hour sexual assault counselor training. All of PASSAGES′ staff and direct service volunteers have completed this training and are able to offer it to potential volunteers.

In summary, PASSAGES, is committed to working for the elimination of all forms of sexual violence through education, prevention and advocacy for the rights and needs of survivors.