The 750 attorneys in nine offices in the U.S. are dedicated to a set of core values: teamwork, client service, innovation, excellence and commitment. They are committed to active engagement in the communities in which they work, and demonstrate this commitment through pro bono legal services, the Seyfarth Shaw Charitable Foundation, and the work of individual attorneys in support of charitable efforts. The law firm of Seyfarth Shaw hosted our October 2008 leadership meeting in Chicago.
Advertising and communications agency Stone Ward worked with our CounterQuo communications team, led by Anne K. Ream and Katie Feifer, to create Counterquo.org. An agency with a mission and a message – “Building Good” – Stone Ward has worked for a long list of green and socially responsible clients, including The Nature Conservancy, The United Way, and the Arkansas Coalition Against Sexual Assault.
It’s music that supports our CounterQuo mission! A percentage of the profits from our benefit CD – The Voices and Faces Project, Volume One – will help underwrite our website and other CounterQuo communications efforts. Named one of the top 25 album releases of 2006, Virgin Records calls our benefit CD a “who’s who” of today’s hottest indie artists, including Neko Case, Motion City Soundtrack and the New Pornographers. We call buying it a great way to support our efforts to change the way the world responds to sexual violence.
One victim, one lawyer — a relationship that alters the course of a rape victim’s life. The mission of the Victim Rights Law Center (VRLC) is:
- To provide legal representation to victims of rape and sexual assault to help rebuild their lives; and
- To promote a national movement committed to seeking justice for every rape and sexual assault victim.
Sexual assault can destabilize very basic — yet essential — victim needs, such as dignity and autonomy (including privacy of confidential records), housing, employment, physical safety, immigration status, and the path toward an education. Access to a civil attorney is often the only recourse to prevent this powerful ripple in a victim's life. VRLC is the first nonprofit law center in the nation—and still one of only a few — solely dedicated to serving the legal needs of sexual assault victims. In Massachusetts, our staff attorneys and a panel of pro bono lawyers provide free legal representation to victims of sexual assault throughout the Commonwealth in civil legal matters relating to the impact of the rape or sexual assault. Nationally, we provide free legal training, technical assistance, mentoring and support to lawyers, advocates, and other community partners on how to utilize civil legal remedies to meet sexual assault victims’ most urgent needs.
The Voices and Faces Project is a national creative documentary initiative created to give voice and face to survivors of sexual violence, offering a sense of solidarity to those who have lived through rape and abuse while raising awareness of how this human rights and public health issue impacts victims, families and communities. Through our lobbying and speakers bureau, creative initiatives and website we are working to change minds, hearts and public policy.
Civic and political engagement is a critical component of The Voices and Faces Project. Our Speakers Bureau and Community Outreach program make our survivor and advocate participants available to community groups, legislators, policy makers and the media, with the end goal of providing both a personal and political perspective on sexual assault.
The Voices and Faces Project website isan interactive online "safe zone" featuring actual survivor stories, links to additional resources, a reading room with downloadable literature on rape and abuse, and a toll-free 24-hour hotline that provides immediate help to those in need.
The Voices and Faces Project permanent archive is a valuable resource for survivors, advocates and policy makers. By compiling survivor testimonials through our interactive survivor survey, we are building a library of survivor stories that will allow us to better understand the impact that rape and abuse have on individuals, families and communities.
The Voices and Faces Project book, audio documentary, and photographic exhibition are creative expressions of our political mission. Each of these projects is being developed by rape survivors, for the broader community, with the end goal of addressing the complexities of rape and abuse in an artistically compelling and socially relevant way.
The Voices and Faces Project Testimonial Writing Workshop has been created for survivors seeking to write about the injustice they have lived or witnessed. This writing, along with the stories survivors have shared with us, is part of our permanent archive.