Tips to help a friend who has been sexually assaulted
If your friend just told you that she/ he was assaulted...
Believe your friend.
Ask your friend what would make her/ him feel safe and try to help with that.
Do not ask questions that put blame on your friend. Tell your that it was not her/his fault.
Try to find out who the attacker was and if there is any chance the attacker could hurt another person. If there is, report to the RCMP or Child and Family Services.
If your friend was JUST assaulted...
If your friend was assaulted within 72 hours, you can offer to support them in getting a rape kit at the hospital or a walk-in clinic. A rape kit examination could produce evidence for the offender to be convicted. If your friend is willing to do this, encourage him/ her not to shower and to put the clothes they wore during the assault in a paper bag. This will preserve more evidence.
Even if your friend does not wish to complete a rape kit, still encourage seeing a doctor, as there is a risk of pregnancy, STI or injury.
People you can call for help and advice
RCMP - 911
To report a recent crime or someone in danger
Child and Family Services
1-800-638-0715 after hours
To report the crime when someone 17 or younger could be in danger
Pace Grande Prairie
for advice and support services between 8.30am - 4.30pm
RCMP non emergency complaints
To report the crime when nobody is in immediate danger
For a safe place to stay if you are 17 or younger (available 24/7)
Odyssey House crisis line
For a safe place to stay and support groups if you are 18 or older (available 24/7)
It is not uncommon for survivors of sexual assault to consider suicide. Keep a close eye on your friend and call the Mental Health Helpline or Suicide Prevention Resource Centre for advice if you are concerned.