For immediate assistance, call 911 or report to your local law enforcement agency.
Here are some questions people frequently ask about Beyond Abuse, our services, and how we operate. Click the questions below to display the answers.
1. What is Beyond Abuse?
Beyond Abuse is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization primarily serving Abbeville, Greenwood and Laurens counties in South Carolina. Our mission is to lead our community beyond sexual violence and child abuse through awareness, advocacy and action. Services provided by Beyond Abuse include complete confidentiality, 24/7 crisis response, advocacy, counseling, assistance with filing victim’s compensation, and facilitation of awareness and education programs. In addition, children ages 17 and under who are referred by law enforcement agencies or the Department of Social Services may receive forensic interviews and/or child maltreatment exams.
2. What is sexual violence?
Sexual violence is any form of non-consensual sexual activity and includes unwanted sex acts from fondling to forcible penetration. Anyone can be a victim of sexual violence: women, men, girls and boys of any age, race and socio-economic status.
3. What is child abuse?
Child abuse is the emotional, physical or sexual mistreatment of children. It includes any damage done to a child which cannot be reasonably explained and which is often represented by an injury or series of injuries appearing to be non-accidental in nature.
4. Who can receive services at Beyond Abuse?
Adults who have been a victim of sexual violence and reside in Abbeville, Greenwood and Laurens Counties can receive services at Beyond Abuse.
Children who have been a victim of child physical and/or sexual abuse and reside in Abbeville, Greenwood, Laurens and Newberry Counties can receive services at Beyond Abuse.
5. How can I schedule an appointment?
Adults who have been a victim of sexual violence at any point during their lifetime can call (864) 227-1623 to schedule a confidential appointment with a licensed masters-level counselor or therapist.
Non-offending caregivers of children who have been a victim of child physical and/or sexual abuse can call (864) 227-1623 to schedule a confidential appointment for the child victim with a licensed masters-level counselor or therapist when the incident of abuse has been reported to law enforcement and/or the Department of Social Services.
All referrals for forensic interviews and child maltreatment medical exams must be made by law enforcement or the Department of Social Services.
6. Is there a cost for services?
Beyond Abuse offers a range of services at no cost to clients or the community. These services include:
- Complete Confidentiality
- 24/7 Crisis Response – Hotline and Emergency Department On-Call Support
- Counseling for Adult and Child Victims and their Non-offending Family Members
- Assistance with Filing Victim’s Compensation
- Facilitation of Awareness and Education Programs
- Forensic Interviews (only by referral from law enforcement agencies and Department of Social Services)
Specialized services for children that may have a cost include:
- Counseling for Children who receive services with the Beckman Mental Health Center Child Therapist located at Beyond Abuse
- Children who receive the Child Maltreatment Medical Exam (only by referral from law enforcement agencies and Department of Social Services)
7. Are services confidential?
All services are confidential. However, all employees and volunteers are mandatory reporters and must report allegations of child abuse to law enforcement and the Department of Social Services.
8. What is anonymous reporting?
The Anonymous Reporting Option is the option that you, as an adult victim of sexual assault can choose without making an official report to law enforcement, yet you can still have forensic evidence collected, prevention of sexually transmitted infections provided, and pregnancy prevention provided if desired. The emphasis of this option is medical attention and evidence collection for the victim within 72 hours of the assault.
Hospital charges for these procedures will be paid for by the South Carolina Office of Victim Assistance (SOVA) as long as the forensic evidence is collected.
As far as law enforcement is concerned, no crime has occurred. The forensic evidence collected will be stored for one year from the date it is collected to give you time to decide whether or not you want to convert the anonymous report to an active law enforcement investigation.
Once the medical examination and forensic evidence collection are completed, the medical provider will seal the forensic evidence collection kit with no name, address, or contact information on the outside. Your hospital patient account number will be placed on the outside of the kit for payment by SOVA and tracking purposes only. The sealed kit will be given to the law enforcement agency with jurisdiction over the location of the anonymously reported sexual assault for storage purposes only. The kit cannot be opened by anyone unless you report your case to law enforcement and initiate an active investigation. Anonymously stored sexual assault kits that are not converted to active law enforcement investigations will be destroyed one year from the date the kit was collected.
The Anonymous Reporting Option is only available to sexual assault victims age 18 and above. Mandated reporting of child abuse applies to sexual assault victims age 17 and under.
9. I want to help. What can I do to assist Beyond Abuse?
There are many opportunities for you to assist Beyond Abuse in our goal to provide appropriate and timely services to victims of sexual violence and child abuse, their families and the community. You can support Beyond Abuse by scheduling awareness and education programs, volunteering to provide on-call emergency response and administrative support, donating office and therapy supplies, and through monetary contributions.
Please call (864) 227-1623 or visit our Volunteer page for more information.
10. What are awareness and educational programs?
Our awareness objectives are to promote a society that is knowledgeable about sexual violence and child abuse and how to reduce the number of these crimes in our community.
All programs and curricula are developmentally and age appropriate.
- Safe vs. Unsafe Touch
- Identifying Perpetrators
- Assertiveness and the Right to Say “No”
- Non-violent Ways of Resolving Conflict
- Identifying Help and Trusted Adults
- Healthy Relationships
- Communication Skills
- Alcohol and Drug Use
- Risk Reduction Behaviors
- Community Resources
- Laws, Statistics and Facts
- Internet Safety
- The Danger of Secrets
- Dispelling Rape Myths