As you’re thinking about the things you’re grateful for and gearing up for some holiday shopping this Thanksgiving weekend, consider setting aside some funds to support a charitable cause.
News of sexual assault is at the forefront over the last month thanks to the deluge of stories concerning individuals abusing their power at all levels of American industry. As such, you might think of helping sexual assault survivors in some way. Here are a few organizations working to provide support and resources for survivors of sexual assault that you can donate to.
Immediately after the election, HuffPost published a roundup of different ways to support sexual assault survivors in the wake of Donald Trump’s victory, considering the more than a dozen women who have accused the current president of sexual assault.
“This is the moment where the power of being an active citizen becomes incredibly important,” chief public affairs officer at the National Sexual Violence Resource Center Kristen Houser told HuffPost at the time. “And that’s something everybody can do ― whether you’re a survivor, a significant other or just a caring individual.”
In the same way, while it can feel overwhelming to read news about a different sexual abuser each day, anyone can make a difference by contributing funds or time to an organization set up to help combat this systemic problem.
The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN), the largest American anti-sexual assault organization, says that the organization has been experiencing a record amount of calls to their hotline from survivors since this news cycle began. The organization reported a 21 percent increase in calls, with an estimated 600 people being helped each day.
RAINN also works to prevent sexual violence and ensure perpetrators are brought to justice, it said, with development director Chelsea Bowers claiming that a donation of $42 can help one assault survivor.
“The brave survivors who have told their stories through the media and the #metoo campaign have elevated a pivotal public discussion about sexual violence—an issue that affects an American every 98 seconds,” the organization’s website reads.
You can reach the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-656-HOPE or online.
Just $42 allows RAINN to help one survivor." RAINN development director Chelsea Bowers
If you’re light on time, you can also donate money.
Charity Navigator, a nonprofit charity evaluator, reports that 92 percent of RAINN’s total expenses get spent on its actual programs, so it’s likely that your contribution will make an actual difference for a person in crisis.
Houser of the NSVRC suggested to HuffPost in 2016 that, if you know a survivor who is open about their sexual assault, you can donate in their name. “Honor their resiliency, honor their spirit and their fight by donating in their name,” Houser said. “That can mean the world to people.”
You can help the NSVRC fight sexual violence by donating here.
There are many other national and local organizations that you can consider donating to as well. HuffPost rounded up a comprehensive list last year.