Our Vision

To contribute to the elimination of rape and sexual abuse against women, children and men in society by: - Offering support, advocacy, information and education in the Southland region; - Providing quality services

Our Mission

To promote the safety and well being of women, children and men through support, education, counselling and advocacy.

Our Values

Tangata whenua: we acknowledge the aspirations of Tangata whenua that are contained and articulated within the articles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi. We are committed to providing culturally appropriate services to our community.

Client-centred: we work from an inclusive position that values victim/survivors, listens to their stories and learns from their experiences. We uphold the need to support and empower victim/survivors and improve their situation.

Feminist perspective: We seek to understand and address structural causes of inequality in our society and to work towards the elimination of sexual violence and abuse within our community.

Collaboration: we understand the importance of working together with other agencies to develop comprehensive responses to sexual violence. We seek to maintain beneficial relationships with service providers.

Education and prevention: we believe that all women, children and men have the right to live in safety and to be free from sexual abuse. We believe that the education of women, children and men and our communities is a positive step towards addressing sexual violence in our community.

Integrity: We work with passion, commitment and integrity towards the establishment of just responses to victim/survivors of sexual assault and a community free of sexual violence.

Our History

History of Southland Help | RAASC : Rape and Abuse Support Center

The Rape and Abuse Support Centre was established in 1981 as a telephone service staffed by volunteers working from their own homes. Back then it was called the Womens' Supportline and they dealt with a broad range of issues such as domestic violence, sexual abuse, health issues, and general information pertinent to women.

The Womens' Support Line joins the National Collective of Rape Crisis and other related groups in New Zealand. This entitled the organisation to receive a small annual grant.

The agency became an Incorporated Society, and continued to work collaboratively with other agencies such as Invercargill Womens' Refuge and the Southland Women's Resource Centre, where the service began to offer face to face assistance.

After much hard work and fundraising by the volunteer members, the house in Nelson Street is purchased.

The name change to Rape and Abuse Support Centre Southland Inc. in support of the focus being on abuse and sexual violence, followed by the restructuring and move away from the collective structure to membership within the wider community under the Society Membership.

The name is rebranded as Southland Help... 33 years on RAASC continues to provide essential services to survivors of rape and sexual abuse and their family and friends.

Our new premises in 225 Tweed Street.

Our Staff

Our Supporters