Prior to 1986, there had not been a rape crisis center on Hilton Head Island. Crisis calls were handled by an office an hour away. In 1986, Cinda Seamon took training to become a rape crisis intervention volunteer. With three other volunteers, Seamon began holding meetings once a month, sending out a newsletter and providing schedules of on-call volunteers to the hospital and sheriff’s department. Through her hard work, the beginnings of the Rape Crisis Center began to take shape.
After a few years as a structured crisis center, the group gained a solid reputation in the community and new volunteers began to join the effort. Seamon continues to head up the group of volunteers in Hilton Head, providing training, meetings, newsletters and schedules. Her 24-hour companion, a pager, remains within arm’s reach and ear’s range at all times.
Seamon has handled hundreds of sexual assault cases over the years, which means participating in evidence collection, dealing with family members in the waiting room of the hospital and providing follow-up for legal action and counseling for the survivor.
The center is now well known on Hilton Head Island and assistance is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Additionally, the Rape Crisis Center on Hilton Head has started a support group which meets in a room donated by the hospital. One of the volunteers is a certified counselor and provides counseling for survivors.
Seamon is also a volunteer Lieutenant with Hilton Head Island Fire & Rescue, where she has been a member since 1990. Along with riding the ambulance and other responsibilities, Seamon heads up the Junior Program, a program for high school students 16-18-years of age who actually ride the ambulance and participate in all duties and aspects of Hilton Head Island Fire & Rescue. The program is designed to give students insight into the emergency medical field and also provide a challenging extracurricular activity. The Junior Program has been honored nationally by the Fire Insurance Association.