A new resource developed for women’s ministry leaders to help them minister to victims of sexual abuse is now available through a partnership between the North Carolina and South Carolina Baptist state conventions.
“Responding Well: A Guide for Women’s Ministry Leaders to Help Survivors of Sexual Abuse” is a free resource manual created by and designed for women’s ministry leaders that includes biblical and practical advice on how to support and care for abuse victims. The guide is available as a free download at respondingwell.org.
Ashley Allen, women’s ministry leader with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, and Melanie Ratcliffe, SCBC women’s ministry leader, co-authored the guide as a way to equip other women’s ministry leaders.
The resource addresses topics related to developing policies and procedures, reporting guidelines, definitions of terms, training volunteers and more.
“Women’s ministry leaders are trusted mentors, guides and confidants to the ladies they lead and serve,” Ratcliffe said. “The ‘Responding Well’ resource was designed to help women’s ministry leaders to not only know how to counsel women who are victims of abuse, but also what steps to take if information that is shared with them is required to be reported by law.”
Allen and Ratcliffe said they view the “Responding Well” resource as a complement to the ongoing efforts by pastors, churches and leaders across the Southern Baptist Convention to address and respond to cases of sexual abuse. “The ‘Responding Well’ resource aligns with those efforts,” Allen said.