National Sexual Assault Hotline 1.800.656.HOPE
Personal Message: Scott Berkowitz, RAINN Founder and President
Scott Berkowitz

Today, we honor the first one million people who have received help from the National Sexual Assault Hotline. We also honor our 1,102 local rape crisis center partners and the more than 25,000 volunteers and staff who have staffed the hotline around the clock, helping people every hour of every day for the last 12 years.

The world was a different place when RAINN created the National Sexual Assault Hotline in 1994. While the country had made much progress over the previous two decades, sexual violence was still a topic best avoided by polite people. Without a national voice, the issue of sexual violence got relatively little attention: no public service announcements on the networks; scarce help for national media looking for accurate statistics and an understanding of the issue; and many victims unaware that help existed. The need for a national hotline was clear.

A Hotline Was Born
RAINN was founded thanks to the generous contributions of Atlantic Records and Warner Music Group, then part of Time Warner. These music connections helped us build RAINN into a nationally known charity very quickly, despite our tiny budget, and introduced the hotline to millions of Americans.

Our vital partners in all of our work have been the nation's local rape crisis centers. At our launch in 1994, 347 local centers affiliated with RAINN to provide services to victims. Today, we have 1,102 local partners. Collectively, tens of thousands of volunteers and crisis center staff have teamed to help callers to the National Sexual Assault Hotline.

Every day and night, these dedicated people sit with victims through invasive emergency room exams; they listen to the anguished voices of callers and find a way to provide solace and support; and they coach the families and friends of victims on playing a positive role in the recovery process.

In short, they offer hope, without which recovery is impossible.

Winning the Fight Against Sexual Violence
Believe it or not, I think we are now winning the fight against sexual violence. The numbers back this up: in the year before we began, 485,000 Americans were victims of sexual violence. Now, the annual average is down to 210,000, a decline of more than half.

But, of course, the current total of 210,000 victims a year is still a staggering number, and we have a long way to go. So I thank you for all you have done, and urge you to stay — or become — involved. Please work with us to cut rape in half once again, and to encourage every victim to report the attack to police. Help us as we develop new ways to serve victims, such as the groundbreaking National Sexual Assault Online Hotline. Together, we can continue to make progress towards our goal of making sexual violence a distant memory.

Sincerely,

Scott signature


Special Thanks

RAINN would like to extend a very special thanks to the following individuals and organizations that helped the National Sexual Assault Hotline become a reality.

99X (Atlanta)
Paige Adams-Geller & Michael Geller
Alpern Family Foundation
Tori Amos
Debbie Andrews
Jennifer Aniston
Applied Biosystems
Frederick Arnold
Atlantic Records
Lori Baron
Beverly Hills 90210
Kelley Bevis
Sen. Joseph Biden
Ted & Nancy Bigos
Rachel Bilson
Rep. John Boehner
Andi Bottner
Cindy Brinkman
Regan Burke
ChoicePoint
Kenneth Cole
Patti Conte
Coors
Kristi Cunningham
Rich D'Amato
Sen. Mike DeWine
Marty Diamond
Mary Dixon
Bertis Downs
Lisa Doyle
Dr. Phil Show
Katrina Emmerson
Sen. Dianne Feinstein
Fenwick & West
Dr. Jerry Finn
Robert Flores
Berit Francis
Brad Furman
General Mills
General Mills
Vicky Germaise
Kellie Greene
Debi Grossfield
Mariska Hargitay
Harper's Bazaar
Heinz Family Foundation
David Henderson
Hootie and the Blowfish & Rusty Harmon
Sherry Hostetter
Jacobs Family Foundation
Ben Jelen
Mark Kelegian
Calvin Klein
Ilse Knecht
KnowNow
KROQ (Los Angeles)
Sen. Jon Kyl
Law & Order: SVU
Sen. Patrick Leahy
Edwin Lewis
Lifetime Television, Toby Graff & Meredith Wagner
Lilith Fair
Lot 47 Films & Jeff Lipsky
Steve Madden
Rep. Carolyn Maloney
Marie Claire
Jim Mazzarella
McAfee
Lisa McCormack
MCI
Sarah McLachlan
Ken Meyer Jr.
Katherine Miller
Rep. Susan Molinari
Montel Williams Show
Mary Jo Moon
Linda Moran
Chuck Morton
Ms. Foundation
MTV
National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences
NBC & Susan Haspel
Office of Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention (Justice Department)
Office on Violence Against Women (Justice Department)
On the Scene Productions & Stacie Hunt
Oprah Winfrey Show
Orchid Cellmark
David Pope
Prudential
R.E.M. & Bertis Downs
RGK Foundation
RealNetworks
Anne Ream
Red Hot Chili Peppers
Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen
Tim Roth
Doug Sabo
Samuelson Law, Technology, and Public Policy Clinic
Tim Schellberg
John Scher
Katherine Darke Schmitt
Melissa Schmisek
Aaron Schwartz
Jane Schwartzman
David Schwimmer
SELF Magazine
Rep. James Sensenbrenner
Sen. Richard Shelby
Simpson Thacher & Bartlett
Smith Alling Lane
Kevin Smith
Arthur Spivak
Joel Stillerman
Rep. Ted Strickland
Diane Stuart
Ryan Sudick
Susan Swan
Target
Rob Timm
Rick Timmins
Toad The Wet Sprocket
Towbes Foundation
Tyra Banks Show
Richard Vaughan
VH-1
Maurice Villency
WHFS (DC)
WXRV (Boston)
Warner Music Group
Robin White
Michael Whitehead
John Witherspoon
Rep. Frank Wolf
Y-100 (Philadelphia)
Z100 (Portland)

And thanks to the thousands of volunteers, donors, supporters and friends who have been such an important part of our ability to help more than one million people.