BICAPSA: Protecting Women from Sexual Abuse

 
Rape victims need trained physicians and nurses to timely and effectively gather evidence, as well as tend to the physical and emotional trauma of the victim.  In 1995, a rape victim waited over five hours in the emergency room for a trained doctor.  She left in frustration, abandoning any chance to prosecute.  Terri Lum, Director, explained how the Big Island Coalition Against Physical and Sexual Assault (BICAPSA) formed after that incident vowing to provide 24-hour service for rape victims.  BICAPSA was the worthy recipient of our Club's Weinberg Foundation grant this year.
 
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BICAPSA is a coalition of several organizations.  Terri has been the Director of the Children's Justice Center, one of the members of the coalition, these past nine years.  BICAPSA has initiated two programs:
  • SANE-- executed assault nurse examiner; nurses specially trained to perform examinations and collect evidence
  • SART-- team investigation and decrease trauma
BICAPSA formed as a charitable organization to sustain management and funding of the SANE/SART program.  The organization also promotes educational opportunities for professionals to better respond to physical and sexual abuse.  SANE nurses are trained in adult, adolescent, and pediatrics abuse.  The intake is through a police report or YWCA.  The Weinberg grant will be used to extend the SANE services to assess children suspected of abuse (95%) who are outside the 72-hour evidence period.