With the arrival of the third series of Broadchurch on ITV featuring a serious sexual assault as its storyline, we are launching an appeal to help real-life survivors like Trish, the victim/survivor played by the amazing Julie Hesmondhalgh. SARSAS worked with the production team to ensure that the right support is available for people who may be affected by the storyline.

The Broadchurch production team had this to say of our involvement:

We’re immensely grateful for the help and advice the team at Sarsas has given us during the making of Broadchurch.  We’re delighted the organisation has been able to use the transmission of Broadchurch Series 3 as an opportunity to further raise awareness of the valuable support they offer victims of rape and sexual assault. We have seen how important it is to these crucial organisations that the funding they receive is adequate to meet the increasing number of reported assaults”

It’s great to see these issues being dealt with sensitively on TV but the story for real-life survivors doesn’t end with the finale of the series.

SARSAS have recently been described as a flagship organisation in the UK helping survivors of rape, sexual assault and childhood sexual abuse rebuild their lives.

Demand for our rape crisis service has risen by 284% over the last 2 years and we expect to see these figures continue to rise with dramas like Broadchurch and high-profile sexual abuse stories being covered in the news.

Every month, over 70 women and girls contact us requesting support and counselling. Due to a lack of funding many of these women and girls may have to wait up to a year before we are able to offer them therapeutic support.

We are running a fundraising appeal to help support the 1 in 5 women, like Trish, who have experienced sexual assault. We are determined that survivors know that they do not need to suffer alone or in silence and there is valuable support to help them rebuild their lives. We believe ALL survivors deserve this support.

We need to raise £30,000 to keep up with demand. Your support can make a real difference to survivors’ lives.

What can you do to help?

You can make a difference to the lives of survivors. Get involved and help support us by:

  • making a donation online
  • making a donation by texting ‘SARS45 £10? to 70070 to donate £10. You can change the amount to £1, £2, £5, £10 or any multiple of that. 100% of your donation will come to us. There will be a way to add gift aid by responding to your text
  • liking our Facebook page and following us on Twitter
  • sharing our Facebook and Twitter posts by tagging 4 of your friends and encouraging them to do the same.


Watch Julie Hesmondhalgh talk about sexual violence on TV and the importance of funding for rape crisis services

Read our Director, Rowan Miller’s Guardian article on the increase in demand for our services