“That is simply not acceptable. We can do much better.”
– Ann Smiley, founder Gwinnett Rape Crisis (1986)
About Mosaic Georgia
Founded in 1986 as Gwinnett Rape Crisis to provide support to victims through a crisis line and accompaniment through forensic medical exams (aka, “rape kit” exam), Mosaic Georgia is a ‘dual services’ center with specialized services for children, teens, and adults. We provide free, confidential support and services to victims and survivors of rape, sexual assault, and child sexual molestation and abuse. We work with survivors of all genders regardless of when the violence occurred and whether they choose to report. Support to children and their non-offending caregivers are offered with care.
A Timeline of Hope: From Now To Then
From now to then, each piece of Mosaic’s history comes together to form a place of safety, health and justice for those victimized by sexual assault.
New Name and Identity, Mosaic Georgia, is Unveiled In October 2018
New Leadership Puts Bold Plan in Place
In March 2018, an expanded board of directors named Marina Sampanes Peed as the new executive director. Building on the foundation of excellence and commitment to victims and survivors laid by Founder Ann Smiley and long-time leader Ann Burdges, the board and staff of GSAC expand capacity to serve more children, teens and adults affected by sexual violence.
Moved from “the little house” to 5,000-square-foot building in Duluth
Awarded grant to provide legal services for victims of sexual assault
Launched Professional Training Services Across Georgia
Launched statewide Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) Training (40 hour didactic course) and Law Enforcement Training on sexual assault
Full Membership with Children’s Advocacy Centers of Georgia
With a strong multi-disciplinary team in place, GSAC achieved full membership.
Added Counseling Services, New Support Groups
Work toward Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) designation; initiated multi-disciplinary team (MDT) model with law enforcement, DFCS, district attorney, school systems.
Changed Legal Name to Gwinnett Sexual Assault Center, Inc.
The name was changed to indicate services are open to all victims of sexualized violence.
Ann Burdges Named Executive Director
Expansion Project for Children’s Services Begins
Started construction for expansion of children’s services.
Additional Support Groups are Added
Establish support groups for family and friends of rape survivors.
Outreach Program Developed for Middle and High School Students
Develop curriculum program for middle school and high school students addressing safe dating issues.
Acquired Equipment for Medical Facility
Funding Efforts Continue for Construction / Expansion
Continued efforts to secure funding for construction/expansion. Hired three additional forensic nurses; two specialists in pediatric forensic medical evaluation. Founder Ann Smiley passed away, leaving a legacy and admonition to maintain focus on the victim with respect and highest standard of care available. Ann Burdges joined the staff in November 1994.
First Nurses Receive Forensic Medical Training
Two nurses attended Memphis Rape Crisis Center for forensic medical training.
First victim received forensic medical care at the Center
Center Signs Lease with City of Duluth, Research and Fundraising Begins for Expansion
Signed 15-year lease with City of Duluth. Started researching and raising funds for construction of additional space and expansion of services.
Center Explores Requirements for Providing Forensic/Medical Care
Researched requirements to provide forensic/medical care at the Center. Long waits at the hospital emergency department cause distress to victim, require law enforcement presence.
More Counselors are Retained and Counseling Programs are Added
Additional counselors and counseling programs developed as needs for service increased. Volunteer advocates respond to victims at hospital; accompany through exam and interview.
First Office Location Obtained
Signed lease with City of Duluth ($1 per year) for property (vacant ranch-style house) to house the center. Applied for and received CDBG funds for computer equipment.
Support Groups for Survivors of Rape are Established, Center Explores Facility Location
Establish Support Groups for survivors of rape. Approached Duluth City Council regarding a facility to house the Center.
Center Received Charitable Status, Fundraising Efforts Begin
Received 501(c)(3) tax exempt, charitable status. Began volunteer fundraising efforts.
Gwinnett Rape Crisis Establishes Itself with Board of Directors, Bylaws
Establish Gwinnett Rape Crisis board of directors. GRC headquartered in basement of volunteer Ann Smiley’s home. Work began on bylaws. Incorporated in October 1987. Established 24-hour “on call” service and monthly meetings for continuing education of volunteers.
Ann Smiley Brings Community Stakeholders Together to Create Rape Crisis Center
Ann Smiley led the charge to create a Rape Crisis Center for Gwinnett County. She called meetings with community leaders, Gwinnett Hospital, police department and members of the media. Put plans in progress for recruiting and training volunteers.
Ann Smiley is Moved to Change Level of Care Sexual Assault Victims Upon Providing Hospital Volunteer Services to Victim
Dr. Cora Salvino responded to the emergency department of Gwinnett Hospital to treat a patient who was violently raped and beaten. Dr. Salvino requested a hospital volunteer, Ann Smiley, stay with the victim until admission was completed. Upon learning that no rape crisis services existed in the community, Ms. Smiley set out to change the conditions, practices, and standards of care for persons victimized by crimes of sexual assault.
Gwinnett County Assumes Financial Responsibility for Rape Examinations, Need for Rape Crisis Group in the County is Established
Established financial responsibility for rape examinations in Gwinnett County to be billed to the County and not the victim. Establish need of a Rape Crisis Group in Gwinnett County.