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Working to end sexual violence

Helpline 08088 010302


5 Things You Need To Know About Our Helpline Webchat

Rape Crisis Scotland blog post: 5 Things You Need To Know About Our Helpline Webchat.

Our national helpline provides initial and short-term support to anyone aged 13+ affected by sexual violence. No matter what happened or when, we’re here.

1. What is it?

After a successful pilot, we have permanently added a webchat support service to our national helpline, giving anyone thinking of reaching out to us a new way to get in touch.

We’ve added a button to our website that connects you directly to a helpline worker via webchat. Through our webchat service you can get the same support that we provide on our helpline, including information and support and, if you’re comfortable with it, a referral to your local Rape Crisis Centre or information about other support services.

2. Why are we doing it?

We know that it isn’t easy to reach out to a helpline and lots of people struggle to pick up the phone. We are committed to making sure that anyone affected by sexual violence can reach us in a way that feels most comfortable for them.

Our helpline is busier than ever, so we’ve increased capacity. Our new webchat support service is another way for us to give people better access to initial, short-term support and information, when they need it.

When we launched our text support service, we heard from people who had never felt able to get in touch before, and we hope that webchat will mean lots more people – survivors, friends, family, and professionals – will feel able to reach out.

3. Will it be confidential?

Webchat – like our other support services – will be a confidential service. We won’t know your name or IP address and will only know the information you choose to share with us. If you do choose to share identifiable information with us, you should be aware that there are some circumstances where we would need to pass this on. There’s more information about this here in our Helpline Confidentiality Policy which you can find here.

When you access our webchat, you will be given a code that is unique to you. If you decide to keep a note of your code and provide us with it on your next chat, we will be able to see the conversation from the last time you reached out to us. If you choose not to, then we won’t know you’ve spoken to us before unless you choose to share this.

4. What is it like to use it?

We know that reaching out for support can be difficult, and we want to do what we can to make it easier and more accessible. We’ve had great feedback from people who used the webchat during the pilot, read some of their reflections below:

“I don't think I would ever have had the courage to phone the helpline but putting it all down in writing was so much easier. The support worker laid everything out so clearly and it was a huge relief to have someone tell me that my feelings are valid.”

“It was great feeling heard and supported, it really helped. I would never [have] dared to call, but a chat felt way less intimidating.”

“It just made me feel heard, and I was able to get some clarity on the situation I was going through. They helped me sort out some quite confusing feelings I was having.”

“I just want to say thank you, it really has been hugely helpful.”

5. How to get in touch:

Our helpline is open every single day of the year, from 5pm – midnight.

We know that many people don’t find it easy to get in touch. We believe you, and just know that when you are ready, we are here.

You can get in touch using the details below:

📞 08088 01 03 02
📲 07537 410 027 [our text number will display on your bill]
💬 click the bottom right-hand icon on our website

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