What is S.M.AR.T. Van Outreach
Our Surrey Mobile Assault Response Team (SMART) is a 24-hour mobile crisis response for survivors of a physical or sexual assault who need emergency medical treatment. The mobile response unit assists people to access medical care, a police response, and access to social services after they have been physically or sexually assaulted.
Hours of operation
Our team is available 24-hours a day, seven (7) days per week, 365 days per year to help you access emergency medical, legal and social services.
How to get a hold of us
Call 604-583-1295 to speak with a support worker if you are considering your options. You do not have to go to the hospital or make a police report to use our services.
What Do We Do
We can accompany you to the hospital after a physical or sexual assault.
After an assault, survivors may have serious injuries without visible signs or symptoms.
Getting medical help after an assault is one of the most important things you can do to empower yourself.
If you have been choked, strangled or have difficulty breathing, swallowing or speaking, go to the hospital immediately.
We can accompany you to the police after a physical or sexual assault.
After an assault, survivors are often afraid to call the police for help. You have the right to choose whether you want to report the assault to the police.
Why do we exist
The fatal beating of a homeless woman – Janice Shore was the catalyst for action that brought together leaders in the community to create The Surrey Vulnerable Women and Girls Group (SVWG) in 2013. That year the group decided that a S.M.A.R.T Van Outreach that helped to protect women and other marginalized people in the community was an integral component of building a safer community.
Who is affected
The program has seen an increase in calls for help during the COVID-19 pandemic, and each night they connect with 20 to 30 women. They are also connecting with dozens of homeless men on the street, handing out warm drinks and snacks, and taking the time to talk to them if they need someone to listen.
What is our impact
We are the only mobile unit that provides a safe environment for women on the street. Our presence and visibility has been effective in defusing criminal activity on the streets. The van presence and our skilled staff’s interventions also facilitates connections with the police to build trust and report criminal activity. The Van will also transport women to hospitals or transition houses, to ensure their safety and privacy are met with a non-judgemental service and to provide support after being victims of crime.