JOINT BASE MCGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST, N.J. - The Army Reserve's 99th Regional
Support Command is hosting quarterly Victim Advocate courses here as part of it
Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention program.

The SHARP program is part of the Chief, Army Reserve's Ready and Resilient
Campaign and supports the Army Reserve's commitment to eradicating sexual
harassment and sexual assault in its ranks.

"We have a zero-tolerance policy, but sometimes things still happen, so that's
the reason why what you're going to do is so important," said Maj. Gen. Margaret
W. Boor, commanding general of the 99th RSC, during a Victim Advocate course
graduation Dec. 13. "It's really the right thing for us to do as an Army to
protect and care for soldiers."

A victim advocate is a trained professional who provides non-clinical advocacy
services and support to soldiers and family members. They provide crisis
intervention, safety planning, non-judgmental support, assistance in securing
medical treatment for injuries, information on legal rights and proceedings, and
referrals to military and civilian resources.

"My main goal is to get as many victim advocates out there as possible," said
Majeeda Gathers, sexual assault response coordinator for the 99th RSC.

The Army Reserve is actively engaged in reducing the stigma of reporting and
strengthening the Army Reserve's ability to track, investigate and prosecute

"If you see something, say something -- maybe you can speak up for someone who
cannot, a victim who is afraid," Gathers said. "I tell everyone to 'Intervene,
Act and Motivate' -- everyone is a leader, and I really want everyone to try and
build this culture to eliminate sexual harassment and assault."

The 80-hour Victim Advocate course is taught by Department of the Army
contractors and is open to soldiers as well as DA civilians.

To apply for the course, e-mail or call the 99th
RSC SHARP hotline at 609-410-7670.