Medford nonprofit to host sexual violence awareness event


CITY OF MEDFORD, Ore. – Community Works, a Medford nonprofit that offers resources to survivors of sexual violence, is hosting a free event Tuesday at the Smullin Health and Education Center.

The event commemorates survivors and will feature an expert panel to discuss various topics in addressing sexual violence.

Not only is April Sexual Assault Awareness Month and Child Abuse Prevention Month, but the National Crime Victim’s Rights week also starts April 21.

The event, called Start by Believing, will be celebrated nationwide. However, Community Works Executive Director Barbara Johnson says this is the first year Community Works is hosting it. Johnson says survivors may under-report crimes due to fear or stigma, so it’s important to be a positive supporter. She also says many people confide in those closest to them before receiving help from formal resources.

“Two to three times, they will go to someone who is a family member or a friend, long before they go to someone like a law enforcement officer or a counselor at school,” Johnson said. 

The Start by Believing event takes place Tuesday from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Smullin Health Education Center on the RRMC campus in Medford.

You can register online, but Johnson says everyone is welcome to show up at the door.


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NBC5 News at Sunrise Co-Anchor Natalie Sirna grew up in Glendora, CA and attended the University of La Verne. She graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in English, and served as Editor-in-Chief of La Verne Magazine. Her experience as an editor piqued her interest in broadcast journalism. When she's not reading or writing, Natalie enjoys oil painting and playing her electric guitar.
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