Did you know…
In South Africa, a girl is more likely raped that to get an education. The frightening truth is that
- 1 women is raped every 17 seconds
- 211 women are raped every hour
- 5082 women are raped every day
- 152 469 women are raped every month
- 1 829 520 are raped every year
What to do if you have been raped.
- Go to a safe place as soon as possible.
- Tell someone you trust. We know it is hard to talk but very important. Please note that the first person you tell is usually asked to go to court to support your story. So, if you decide to report the rape, the police must be able to find and talk to that person.
- Do not wash yourself or throw away your clothes, no matter how much you want to. There may be hair, blood and semen from the rapist on your body or clothes. If you decide to report the attack, this will be important evidence.
- Do not drink any alcohol or take medication before the district surgeon or doctor examines you. If you do, tell them what you have taken.
- If you are badly hurt, go straight to a hospital or a doctor. They can call the police to the hospital if you want to report what has happened to you. The police can also take you to the hospital.
- The sooner a doctor examines you, the better the chances of finding strong proof like blood or semen from your attacker on your body or clothes.
- Put the clothes you were wearing when you were attacked into a paper bag or wrap them in newspaper. The chemicals from a plastic packet can destroy evidence from your rapist.
- You will also need to undergo anti-retroviral treatment, as soon as possible, to decrease your chances of contracting HIV. You must take this treatment within 72 hours of the rape.
(Information source: How to respond to rape and other gender-based violence: A guide for survivors and activists published by the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC)
Other services available to rape survivors:
- Buffalo City has a Thutuzela Care Centre in Mdantsane at Cecilia Makiwane Hospital, East London Tel: 043-761 2023. This is likely where you will be taken for the forensic medical examination. Currently this Thutuzela Centre is experiencing challenges which may result in you not being attended to as you should.
- You can contact the Commission on Gender Equality through their complaints line 0800 007 709 or their East London office line 043 722 3489 to report any gender discrimination and abuse.
- The Rape Crisis Cape Town Trust has published a comprehensive guide for survivors of rape called You & Rape. It is available free of charge on-line and in three languages (English, Afrikaans and isi-Xhosa). Download it from the following site: http://www.rapecrisis.org.za
Remember you have a right to medical care and support throughout the criminal justice process from opening your case, during court proceedings and to be kept informed if your rapist is out on bail, applying for parole and re-entering the community.
When you are ready to talk contact us on (043) 743 7266 to set up a face to face counselling session.
If you are not ready for face to face contact, you can speak to a counsellor telephonically (043) 7222 000 (8:00 to 16:00) or 084 091 5410 (all hours) or email us firstname.lastname@example.org.