THE Limerick-based Rape Crisis Midwest group is hoping to recruit and train a Ukrainian speaker who could offer counselling to fellow Ukrainians in their own language.
For now, the Rape Crisis Network’s national website has launched a version of the site explaining the services available in Ukrainian.
The national website www.rapecrisishelp.ie is now available in ten different languages, including Ukrainian.
Rape Crisis helps provides information about the professional support and the choices available to survivors of sexual violence.
Rape Crisis Midwest spokesperson, Verena Tarpey told the Limerick Post: “This is one step towards helping people who have been displaced. As of yet, we don’t have a Ukrainian speaker but if we could find someone interested, with some background in counselling, we would have a place on our own training course for them.”
Rape Crisis runs specialist courses in counselling for people who have experienced sexual violence and each course takes nine months to complete.
In recent weeks, reports have been coming out of Ukraine of systematic rape by invading soldiers.
But Ms Tarpey said that even with the necessary training period, having someone who can speak the language to help refugees who have fled to Ireland would be important.
“The Ukrainian people who have come here are in crisis mode. They are dealing with the immediate needs and practicalities like getting accommodation and organising getting their children into school.
“Accounts of sexual violence are common in war but for many, speaking up about it often comes later, after other priorities have been dealt with.”
Anyone interested in either training as a counsellor or volunteering with Rape Crisis Midwest can contact the service here