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Crime Victim Assistance/Discretionary Grants

Published on AidPage by IDILOGIC on Jun 24, 2005

Program accomplishments...

OVC supports the development of training, technical assistance, and demonstration projects to expand and improve the quality of services to crime victims. In recent years, OVC has directed substantial funding to developing resources for the field that will assist victim advocates and other allied practitioners in reaching and serving victims from populations that have been largely unserved, including victims with disabilities, immigrant victims, and victims from cultural, ethnic and racial minority groups. Serving child and adult victims of sexual assault remains problematic for many communities, and OVC continues to support several training and technical resources that foster the replication of enhancement of Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) and Sexual Assault Response Teams across the nation, including two pilot SANE programs in Indian Country. Various other solicitations provide funding for projects in Indian Country. These grants support victim assistance programs for Indian tribes under Federal criminal justice jurisdiction, including 28 victim assistance programs, one elder abuse demonstration program, a training and technical assistance grant for OVC's American Indian grantees, tribal CASA programs, and a project to provide training to tribal leaders on the critical role of their support of tribal victim assistance programs. OVC also has funded the planning and implementation of State Victim Assistance Academies tomeet the entry-level educational and training needs of a broad range of victim assistance providers and allied professionals who work directly with victims of crime. OVC also supports public awareness initiatives on crime victims' rights and issues, including the annual dissemination of a resource kit to the field to assist their activities during National Crime Victims Rights Week (NCVRW) and the sponsorship of an annual NCVRW awards ceremony for exemplary service providers and organizations. During FY 2004, OVC discretionary funding continues to be directed at several areas, including the faith-based response to crime victims, implementation of victims? rights, underserved crime victims in both urban and rural settings, a demonstration program to assist victims orf identify theft, victim assistance in Indian Country, working with grass roots organizations to identify and replicate promising practices in serving victims, as well as the development and dissemination of information and training for a wide variety of practitioners who work with crime victims. In addition, with the increased threat of terrorism against Americans worldwide, OVC created a new Terrorism and International Victims Unit (TIVU) which is responsible for developing programs and initiatives to help victims of terrorism, mass violence and crimes that have transnational dimensions. OVC has provided funding for assistance and services for victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the USA, Oklahoma City, the bombings of Pan Am 103, the US Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, Khobar Towers, and the USS Cole. Assistance has included toll-free information lines, family web sites, informational briefings, travel to criminal justice proceedings, and mental health counseling. In addition, OVC works in liaison with other Federal agencies to coordinate services for victims of terrorism; has worked with the Center for Mental Health Services at HHS to develop training for mental health service providers on assisting victims of terrorism and mass violence; is working with the Office for Domestic Preparedness to provide training to enhance the capacity of first responders to deal effectively with victims of terrorism; provides funding for a community-based assessment and planning process to help states and local communities design and implement a strategic plan for responding to victims of criminal mass violence; and provides funding to track kidnapped children taken across international borders