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Supporting critical thinking, learning and victim-defined advocacy...

How the Intake Process Feels to Victims

Download this Exercise.

Overview: This exercise provides an opportunity to practice and experience victim defined advocacy during the intake process.

Group size:Work in pairs requires an even number of staff.

Time Needed: This exercise can be done during a regular staff meeting or can be given to staff as an exercise to do during the course of their work day and then debriefed at a staff meeting.

Leader preparation/instructions:

  • Review BCS website section “BCS Approach”
  • Be prepared to describe victim-defined advocacy.


  • Ask individuals to pair up with a co-worker. Have one person be the advocate and one person take on the role of a victim. Let folks know they will switch and have the opportunity to play the other role. Using your current paperwork and intake procedures, ask the advocates to conduct an intake as they would with a victim coming in for services. Give participants a good amount of time so it feels realistic. After about 20 minutes (of course an intake would take longer than 20 minutes) have them switch roles. Be sure to ask people to conduct some type of safety planning.
  • Discuss/debrief with staff using the following questions:
    • How did it feel as the advocate?
    • As the victim coming in for services?
    • What felt “victim-defined?” What seemed defined by some other priority? What?
    • What would you change?
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