Saying Goodbye to Mona – My ISVA (Independent Sexual Violence Advocate)

Saying Goodbye to Mona – My ISVA (Independent Sexual Violence Advocate)

A woman reflects on her work with Mona,  through nia’s East London Rape Crisis service

I was allocated Mona as my ISVA, with East London Rape Crisis, about a year ago. I am aware that tomorrow is her last day and in light of that I wanted to share my thoughts with you.

Mona has been the main factor in helping me fight for justice and it’s only right of me to highlight the extremely positive affect she has had on me personally and also for future women who face the difficulties I have had.

There have been many people involved in my case and every single person has walked away and advised me that there is nothing we can do. Every person has reminded me that I am a victim and left me feeling as though I will also be just that. There has been many times that I wanted to give up in everything. But without fail, Mona was always pop randomly and check how I am and more often then not end the conversation telling me she is going off to explore something, coming  back to me with a new route for us to take. Had I listened to all those involved, I wouldn’t be here today and I wouldn’t be continuing to fight for justice. Further to that, I would still carry the mentality of being a victim, that alone brings it’s own burden. Mona stayed, listened and never stopped exploring more options for me, paving the way for my case but also opening new options for future case so that the same mistakes aren’t made and difficulties faced.

We took a call last week whereby the National Crime Agency apologised for mistakes made with my case and advised us that they are changing internal processes and supplying additional training to staff – Mona helped me achieve that.

Today I am a completely different person I was before getting the opportunity to work with Mona. Her positive outlook on such a negative situation is remarkable and thanks to her support I remember who I am. I am a survivor and I have a voice.

For my own selfish reasons I am gutted that Mona is leaving. Every person in my situation deserves the support she has given, she has been the only person to show me what fight is, to not give up if you don’t want to, to hold my head high and follow my gut feeling. Three years on I can proudly say I am a survivor.

I’d like to thank you for the opportunity you have given me to work with such an amazing ISVA, she really has helped me change my life and is an absolute credit to Nia.

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Juliet Coley

Seminars – Juliet Coley

Juliet Coley is a Christian, mother, educator, black children’s book publisher, author and heart attack, heart surgery and cancer survivor.

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Rape Crisis national service standards - Rape Crisis professionally approved
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