Support for the victims of sexual violence
At the Seri Support Centre, we help and support those who have experienced sexual violence. Seri stands for sexual offence (in Finnish: seksuaalirikos).
Sexual violence is any sexual act or attempt to commit it that is done without consent. Sexual violence includes for example abuse, unwanted physical advances, harassment, touching, forcing someone to engage in humiliating or unpleasant sexual activities, incest, or sexual act done by a close relative, and rape.
The Seri Support Centre and the emergency phone service are open 24 hours a day, also on weekends. The most comprehensive support services are available during office hours.
At the centre, you will be assisted by a doctor, a nurse or a midwife, a psychiatric nurse and, if necessary, a sexual therapist and a social worker. The Seri Support Centre offers the following services:
• forensic medical examinations and laboratory tests
• support to get you through the days ahead
• support to recover from your difficult experience
• necessary medications, vaccinations and emergency contraception
• treatment follow-up plan, and
• information on other support services.
You can go to the support centre by yourself, with a loved one or under the direction of an authority within a month of the incident. You can also call the Seri Support Centre and ask for advice.
You do not need to file a police report to get help, but we also support you in reporting an offence. Health care personnel are required by law to submit a child welfare notification of those under the age of 18 who have experienced sexual violence.
The Seri Support Centre is located in the North Karelia Central Hospital, and its activities are controlled by the Women's Centre.
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The service is free of charge and intended for all persons over 16 years of age who have experienced sexual violence regardless of their gender. You do not need a referral to use the services. Those under 16 years of age who have experienced sexual violence are assisted by the Medical Helpline and the emergency clinic. A paediatrician is responsible for the treatment at the emergency clinic.
You should go to the Seri Support Centre as soon as possible after you have experienced sexual violence. Call before your arrival. A nurse will advise you on what to do. If you have not showered after the incident, you should come to the Seri Support Centre without taking a shower.
If the incident happened over a month ago, you can seek help from your local health station, family counselling clinics of social services, student health care or through various organisations.