The Crisis Center of Tampa Bay unveiled its new sexual assault services location in Ruskin on April 28. The new center is located at 201 14th Ave. SE in Ruskin. The Crisis Center of Tampa Bay is a nonprofit agency and is Tampa Bay’s elite provider of crisis and trauma services. The only other center is located in North Tampa.
The new location in Ruskin allows the community in Southern Hillsborough County to be better served. With a second location, in a rapidly growing area of Hillsborough County, the Crisis Center of Tampa Bay will be able to help more individuals receive advocacy and support following an assault.
The new location opened with the help and support of Hillsborough County Commissioner Harry Cohen and all of the county commissioners, Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister and Hillsborough Clerk of Court Cindy Stuart.
At the unveiling, several of the above spoke, and attendees toured the new facility. Cohen said, “This is the type of public-private partnership that makes sure everyone has access to the best possible services.”
Chronister said, “Imagine being a victim of rape and having to travel an hour and a half to the crisis center. A lot of victims start questioning themselves and deputies have to explain that evidence is needed. Now, you only need to travel a short distance.”
Chronister added, “You (Crisis Center of Tampa Bay) are the beacon of hope and healing. You provide services to someone in their darkest hour. You just made Hillsborough County a safer place to live.”
Clara Reynolds, president and CEO of the Crisis Center of Tampa Bay, said, “Our mission is that no one has to face crisis alone. One of our four pillars is an effortless experience where you can … easily get access. This center is the epitome of effortless service.”
It was apropos that the center was unveiled at this time as April is sexual assault awareness month.
Reynolds added, “We need to tell sexual assault victims that they are important and they will be believed.”
The new center offers a space that is calm and reassuring and designed to make clients feel comfortable.
While a rape exam can only be done within five days of an assault, advocacy can happen at any time. You can connect with the Crisis Center of Tampa Bay by dialing 211. Someone is available to connect with you 24/7.