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Geelong: 03 5222 4318 Wimmera: 03 5381 1211 Sexual Assault Crisis Line (24 Hours): 1800 806 292 Safe Steps (24 Hours): 1800 015 188

About Us

Our Story

Established in 1978, our organisation has grown into a highly professional community based, not-for-profit service offering a wide range of free and confidential services for adults, children and young people who have experienced sexual assault or family violence.

Located in Geelong, Horsham and Footscray we offer our specialist services across the Barwon, Wimmera and Western Melbourne areas of Victoria.

The Sexual Assault & Family Violence Centre (The SAFV Centre) was created in 2016 following the merger between Barwon Centre Against Sexual Assault (Barwon CASA) and Minerva Community Services (Minerva).The establishment of The SAFV Centre now means that our clients can access all sexual assault and family violence services under the one roof.

Our clients are at the centre of all we do.

Our experienced staff work closely with anyone who has experienced sexual assault or family violence in supporting their recovery; to alleviate the negative impacts of violence on their lives; and create opportunities for them to rebuild their sense of control. We also work with anyone else affected, including family, friends and support people.

Our vision

Our vision is for a community free from sexual assault and family violence, and a society underpinned by the principles of gender equality, social justice and human rights.

Our philosophy

The perpetration of sexual assault and family violence is never acceptable. It is a violation of human rights and a crime against individuals and society. Sexual assault and family violence are whole of community concerns and it is the responsibility of the whole community to actively work towards prevention and elimination.
Everyone who has experienced sexual assault or family violence has the right to be supported in their recovery and to have their experiences of abuse heard and acknowledged.

Our purpose

We aim to:

  • Provide services underpinned by a feminist philosophy that are empowering, respectful and inclusive, and which address barriers to service access.
  • Provide high-quality, sensitive and responsive services to women and children who have experienced and been impacted by family violence and to people who have experienced and been impacted by sexual assault.
  • Design and implement effective evidence-based prevention of violence against women and gender equality programs and initiatives.
  • Contribute to the evidence base and social policy frameworks which inform effective service provision.
  • Contribute to the systematic and social change necessary to eliminate family violence and sexual assault.
The Sexual Assault & Family Violence Centre acknowledges the traditional owners and custodians of the land we stand on. We are committed to working toward creating a community where all people indigenous and non-indigenous are safe, connected and empowered to live well. The Sexual Assault & Family Violence Centre recognises the diverse needs of our community and we ensure our services are inclusive of all children, young people and their families including those who are of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent, from culturally and/or linguistically diverse backgrounds, those who identify as LGBTIQ and persons living with disability. We work collaboratively with people and partner organisations who also support our diverse client group. Interpreter and translator services are available to all our clients upon request.

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