Gayle Crabtree has been a advocate for victim's rights since 1992, when she coordinated a Christmas program and collected supplies for a local women's homeless shelter. The area where she lived didn't have a sexual assault center until several months after she needed one. She began volunteering after it opened in 1996 by serving on panels and with information fairs. She worked these activities around those of being a wife and mom.
Gayle knew what it was like to be in difficult circumstances even before being sexually assaulted as an adult. Her childhood years were spent homeless in "doubled up" circumstances. This is where one family "doubles up" in the household of family or friends because of a lack of income. In her case, she, her mother and sibling lived in a tiny two-bedroom home that belonged to her maternal grandparents. Her mom worked long hours in the grandparent's business for long hours. She received no pay, had restricted movements and did not even own a vehicle until after