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Reaching Sexual Assault Survivors
Native Brief: WASHINGTON - The Gila Indian Community, based in Sacaton, Arizona, has been awarded a three year $450,000 grant from the US Department of Justice's Office on Violence Against Women under the Sexual Assault Demonstration Initiative.
The Gila Indian Community grant was one of five awarded on Thursday for a total of $2.7 million under the Sexual Assault Demonstration Initiative. The initiative is the Office of Violence Against Women's first large scale project to determine best practices and needed action in reaching more sexual assault survivors and providing comprehensive sexual assault services.
The five additional communities are: Shelter Inc., Alpena, Michigan; Doves Inc., Gering, Nebraska; New York Asian Women's Center Inc., New York; Family Violence and Rape Crisis Services, Pittsboro, North Carolina; and Safe Place, Olympia, Washington.
The goals of the initiative are to:
increase outreach to those populations experiencing sexual assault in their communities, but not currently accessing services;
develop models of service provision that prioritize the needs of sexual assault survivors; and
assess the efficacy of those steps in increasing the numbers and types of sexual assault survivors who access those newly enhanced services.
“Sexual assault is a complex crime that affects every sector of our society,”
said Susan B. Carbon, Director of Office of Violence Against Women. "Coordinated victim services, including emotional and medical support along with a well defined criminal justice response are vital to helping victims and their families heal. This demonstration initiative will provide support for the development of best practices that will significantly impact OVW's future work and the work of our partners."
Specifically, the Sexual Assault Demonstration Initiative will enhance the range of service options for victims of sexual assault; improve the overall treatment of sexual assault victims; and enhance the skills and knowledge of advocates working with victims and survivors. The project will identify barriers to providing quality assistance and advocacy and document and disseminate solutions for replication.
At the conclusion of this project, key tools, methods and strategies will be developed in conjunction with the demonstration sites, and disseminated widely to the broader field of dual/multi-service agencies serving sexual assault survivors. Promising practices and innovative strategies will be made available through publications and trainings developed by Office of Violence Against Women, the National Sexual Assault Coalition Resource Sharing Project and the National Sexual Violence Resource Center.
The Gila Indian Community is an Indian Reservation that is south of Phoenix, Arizona and its located within the Phoenix Metropolitan Statistical Area. The Gila Indian Community is composed of two American Indian tribes: the Pima and Maricopa. There are some 14,000 tribal members who are part of the Gila Indian Community.
posted September 16, 2011 8:57 am edt
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