2021 Grants Challenge

SAFE House: Survivors Are Free of Exclusion

Voices Beyond Assault seeks to provide a SAFE, healing and uplifting enviroment for survivors of any form of sexual violence. Post trauma aid, resources and therapy are essential in healing and thriving after sexual trauma; a SAFE House of advocates, therapy and tranquility, this will amplify the well being of survivors post traumatic needs. Through our three pronged approach of education, advocacy and resource delivery, we aim to provide a SAFE place for survivors to become the newfound leaders in our world’s fight against sexual violence.


In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

Central LA

East LA

South LA


County of Los Angeles

City of Los Angeles

What is the problem that you are seeking to address?

Sexual violence impacts survivors in all areas of their lives which includes their housing. More than 90% of rape and sexual assault victims know their attacker, because of this there are many safety concerns and trauma ‘triggers’ in their daily lives. A SAFE space where advocates, therapists and innovative therapy options are readily available is crucial to every survivors healing journey. While sexual assault post trauma organizations connect survivors with the services they need immediately following a sexual assault, needs related to a SAFE enviroment may be unaddressed and this is where our SAFE House is valuable. According to the NSVRC, “Safe and affordable housing is a necessary foundation to lead a healthy and productive life. Housing and sexual violence can have a reciprocal relationship.” Sexual violence has soared radically in the current COVID-19 pandemic, and thus, should be of primary concern in today’s world. The needs of survivors should be addressed accordingly.

Describe the project, program, or initiative that this grant will support to address the problem identified.

This would be a novel survivor-centered empowerment project, with the core objective of being able to provide emergency trauma relief for survivors in the city of Los Angeles. Because of the effects of sexual trauma which have neurobiological impacts on the brain and nervous system causing PTSD, drug use, anxiety, and even suicide. The need for rehabilitation is required. In sum, this would be a home facility located within Los Angeles County where survivors could visit for a period of time to receive aid, resources, rest, rejuvenate, and heal following an incident(s) of sexual trauma, or moment of ‘triggers’ by their surroundings. Specifically, this house would have an array of on-site facilities available to our survivors; such as a (1) writing room, (2) meditation centre, (3) a quiet room, (5) optional therapy services, (6) yoga studio, and (7) temporary residency. Through this project, VBA would be able to immediately act and provide survivors of sexual violence with advocates, therapists, self care options and a space to heal and more importantly be SAFE. This program is unique, as there are an array of survivor shelters within the LA district [focused on re-housing and long term sheltering] but not focusing on direct healing and rejuvenation that survivors so readily need. Our Survivor SAFE House is imagined with the aim of providing an immediate life line to any survivor in need of post-trauma aid.

In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?

Pilot or new project, program, or initiative

Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?

Direct Impact: 250

Indirect Impact: 2,000

Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.

The number of rapes reported in Los Angeles, CA was 62.73 per 100,000 population, a 2.38% increase from 2017. This is staggering. Some of the immediate and life long effects of sexual trauma are: self harm, substance abuse, panic attacks, PTSD, sleeping disorders, and suicide. By creating a SAFE atmosphere for survivors that is secure, efficient in support systems, therapists, advocates, post traumatic resources and assistance needed for rehabilitation will alleviate the many issues that do not allow survivors to live their best lives in society. VBA’s SAFE House will assist in survivors being productive citizens within our Los Angeles community. Our SAFE House will create a SAFE and healthy community of surviviors of sexual violence. With better immediate post-trauma services and a SAFE environment, survivors in Los Angeles can better serve the community and other survivors within Los Angeles County. There will be a new face of survival and a healing paradigm created!

What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?

VBA plans to define and measure the success of the Survivor Safe House project through metrics such as: (1) amount of survivors serverd [per annum], (2) daily/weekly capacity rates, (3) number of lodging/retreat days offered, (4) amount of therapy sessions completed [per annum], (5) amount of victim advocates requested on site, (6) amount of referrals offered to survivors [to more long-term emergency accommodation]. This information will all be collected, stored and published through our annual reports. The true success with having our SAFE House is the rehabilitation and lives that will be changed within our community and truly changing the face of survival and making our city of Los Angeles a healthier and happier place for survivors to thrive.

Which of the LIVE metrics will you impact?​

Healthcare access

Resilient communities

Access to mental health services

Indicate any additional LA2050 goals your project will impact.

LA is the best place to LEARN

LA is the healthiest place to CONNECT