FAUSA has a strong history of donating money to worthy causes. Now, FAUSA members can participate in another dimension of support for one of our annual grant recipients, Project Beloved. During April, which is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, FAUSA is planning a first-of-its-kind activity--a nationwide volunteer event with Project Beloved.
The organization, founded by Tracy Matheson in response to her grief over the rape and murder of her daughter, Molly Jane, strives to educate, advocate, and collaborate to change the conversation about sexual assault and empower survivors to find their voices. The FAUSA grant proceeds will fund a soft interview room, where survivors can be privately and comfortably questioned, and items for Beloved Bundles. The Bundles are provided to survivors who have a forensic exam or "rape kit," when their belongings are seized as evidence and include simple clothing, undergarments, travel-sized hygiene products and stress-relieving items that allow survivors to leave the exam with dignity and the knowledge that someone cares.
Volunteers assemble and deliver bundles locally, a perfect volunteer activity because no monetary donations are required (although always welcome) and assemblers receive the satisfaction of knowing that they are supporting individual sexual assault survivors. Learn more about the process HERE. FAUSA is encouraging local FAUSA groups and individual members around the country to volunteer to assemble Beloved Bundles in April. The activity involves locating a sexual assault center, hospital or other organization in your area that does SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) exams, does not currently have bundles and would like them. list of locations already receiving bundles and this Check this list of sexual assault centers by state.
FAUSA members will also have the opportunity to assist in the installation of the soft interview room we are funding (which will have a plaque with FAUSA’s name.) “Our” room will be at the police station in Burnet, Texas, near Austin, with the installation currently scheduled for April 14. And mark your calendar for April 18 for a virtual Zoom presentation with Tracy Matheson telling the story of how and why she started Project Beloved. If you are interested in learning more in the meantime, watch this Dateline episode about Molly Jane’s case (you will have to enter the name of your TV provider).
If you are interested in assembling bundles and/or participating in the soft interview room installation, contact Therese Hartwell for more information.