First ever SANE Exam Center Opens in Lawton

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September 29, 2023

Caitlin Gatlin | Communications & Marketing Manager

The HELP Advocacy Center Team is excited to announce the opening of the SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner) Exam Center in Lawton on October 1.

It’s a project 18 months in the making and was made possible through the work of the HELP Advocacy Center Team, comprised of several community, county, and City partners.

Currently, sexual assault victims visit several facilities after an assault to seek medical, advocacy, and law enforcement services. The new center encompasses all components under one roof.

The SANE Exam Center comes equipped with a waiting area, an advocacy center, a kitchen, two full bathrooms, and an exam room.

“If the victim wants to have a rape exam, they will come here,” said Ashley Chapman, the Sexual Assault Program Coordinator, Marie Detty’s New Directions. “We have four SANEs who volunteer their time and provide that component to the post assault examination.”

The Center’s location is not being disclosed to the public. Not only will this protect the victim from the perpetrator, but also from any guilt or shame they may feel.
“Sexual assault is never the answer,” Chapman said. “Unfortunately for victims, they second guess themselves and may think it was their fault, so there is a lot of embarrassment there. We don’t want to broadcast that this is where someone is coming for something like this.”

The main components of the center are already in place. Now, the focus shifts to creating a peaceful and comforting environment for survivors. The Team is asking for donations for the Center to bring peace & comfortability to the survivors that come through the door.

The Team has created an Amazon Wishlist with specific items for anyone wanting to donate items to the Center. In addition to the items on the list, donations of travel-sized toiletries or monetary donations are welcome. To donate, click HERE.

For more information, contact a HELP Advocacy Center Team Member at @email.