Safe Haven Program Overview

Safe Haven's Mission is to create volunteer community advocate groups to bridge the gap between victims of sexual assault and resources. By providing a safe and confidential place to report issues of abuse, and offering ongoing support needed due to acts of violence.

The goal of this program is to create community advocates that are invested in serving as a resource, and will partner with local and national organizations to help prevent sexual abuse.  Creating Safe Havens to serve as a reminder of this social problem and to be used as a means of support, education, intervention and prevention. Once again this program was compliled of resources and Ibelieve.org doesn't own all the content in this program.  However the content does reflect the  mission of ibelieveyou.org in that it creates an opportunity for advocacy for victims and also promotes the education of our communities. Below is the Program Outline for Safe Haven and the list of Client Services. To start your Safe Haven today in your community or organization contact SafeHaven4us@gmail.com.  Our advocates will help guide you along the way in getting your program started.

 

 

Safe Haven Program Outline

 

 

Establishing Safe Haven within your Organization

 

  1. Understanding Sexual Assault and its Effects

  2. Descriptions of Advocates & Counselors

  3. Volunteers and Resources needed to get started

  4. Client Services Offered

  5. Learning your Community Advocates and Resources

 

Advocacy Training

 

  1. Victim Advocate & Counselor Qualifications

  2. Required Trainings for the Position

  3. Learning Advocacy Vocabulary

  4. Victim Rights

  5. Prevention of Re-victimization

  6. Tools for Family Member and Friends of Victims

  7. Self- Care Plan to prevent Burn-out

 

Support Group Training

 

  1. Facilitators Qualifications & Required Training

  2. Guidelines for Support Groups

  3. Communication Tools

  4. Assessing & Summarizing Group Discussions

  5. 8- Week Group Session Curriculum

 

Peer Advocates “The Keepers”

 

  1. Bystander’s No More

  2. What to Say & Not to Say

  3. How to Help Survivors of Sexual Assault

  4. Awareness of Local Resources

  5. Pledge

 

Guidelines

 

  1. Code of Ethics for Advocates & Counselors

  2. Protocols for Reported Assaults of Present Occurrences and Previous Ones

 

Internal Investigation Policies and Procedures

 

  1. How to investigate within my organization

  2. What happens after I have had an incident reported

  3. How to Protect Victims Privacy

  4. Confidentiality Clause & Agreement

  5. Agreements For the Advocates & Counselors

  6. Agreements For the Victims

 

How to Advertise within my Organization and the Community

 

  1. Incorporating the program information into the orientation process

  2. How to send out Communication about Resources

  3. Creating a Campaign for Domestic Violence Month

  4. Creating a Campaign for Sexual Assault Month

 

Forms Included

 

  • Intake Form

  • Victims Needs Assessment

  • Confidentiality Form

  • Support Group Sign Up Form

  • Report Forms

  • Collaborating Agencies Form

  • Reference Material

  • Brochures               

 

HOW TO START A SAFE HAVEN IN YOUR COMMUNITY OR ORGANIZATION

 

 

 

 

Safe Haven Client Services

 

SAFE HAVEN provides comprehensive services for victims of sexual violence and their families.

 

 

Victim Advocacy

The SAFE HAVEN Client Services Coordinator can do the following:


• Identify links to community services (such as housing , advocacy, counseling, transportation services, medical services, etc.) and connect victims to these resources.
• Provide on-going emotional support

 

Additional Client Services offered if available
• Accompany and advocate for the client during medical, law enforcement, and legal procedures
• Assist client in filing for state funded Victim’s Compensation
• Act as a liaison between client and District Attorney’s Office and Law Enforcement Agencies

 

Advocates & Counselors

SAFE HAVEN will provide trained advocates and counselors that will be available to support male and female victims of sexual abuse, rape, sexual assault and etc. These counselors and advocates will be able to get a general assessment of the victim and provide them with resources and support that they need.  All advocates and counselors have completed specialized training and have passed a background check.

 

 

Support Groups

Although everybody grieves and experiences emotional pain in very individual ways, when we come together to share our experiences, we see that there are many similarities too. Support groups can help you find strength and support in those similarities.  SAFE HAVEN offers support groups for women and men coping with the trauma of domestic violence, for victims of child abuse and their non-offending parents, for rape and sexual assault victims, as well as others.

 

Law Enforcement Advocacy

Sexual assault is a crime; however, it is the client’s decision whether or not to file a police report. If a client decides to file a report it will need to be done in the city or county where the assault occurred. Reporting can be done through their local police station, which should be able to provide you with the option to remain anonymous through a blind report.

 

Additional Law Enforcement Services offered if available:

SAFE HAVEN can also accompany clients to meetings with Law Enforcement and relay information and case updates from Law Enforcement to clients.

 

Blind Reporting

A Blind Report is essentially an anonymous police report. If someone is interested in filing a blind report, they can give as much or as little information as they feel comfortable with. Even if an individual gives all their contact information and the perpetrator’s as well, an investigation will not be opened unless the client expresses that interest with the police.

 

After the blind report form is filled out, SAFE HAVEN faxes it to a confidential fax machine at the local Police Department. The copy is kept confidential and is not part of public record. If the individual desires, they can have a copy of the blind report as well. Law Enforcement will never get in touch with the client or perpetrator based on the information on the blind report form unless the client wishes them to do so. SAFE HAVEN can also act as the intermediary between the police and the client.

 

 

Court Advocacy

SAFE HAVEN can play an important role in helping clients navigate the justice system.
 

Court Advocacy can include:
• Assisting clients in asserting victim rights
• Providing information about the legal process and court proceedings
• Providing clients a safe space to disclose information
• Giving clients support and encouragement throughout the legal process

 

Additional Law Enforcement Services offered if available:

Accompanying clients to court and court-related proceedings

 

However, SAFE HAVEN cannot:
• Provide legal advice
• Represent clients in legal proceedings
• Make any decision for clients
• Coach clients on what words to use in court
• Negotiate settlements on behalf of clients

 

Victims Compensation Claim

Victims Compensation serves to reimburse citizens for medical expenses and lost wages as a result of being the victim of a violent crime committed in the United States, as well as the District of Columbia, the U.S.Virgin Islands, Guam, and Puerto Rico.  While no amount of money can erase the trauma and grief victims suffer, this financial aid can be beneficial to the recovery process.

 

All Victims Compensation claims must include the signed, notarized application, a copy of the police report, and all itemized bills the client wishes to have covered. There is no guarantee that Victims Compensation will cover these costs, each claim is investigated individually and this process can often take some time. Victims have up to two years from the date of the crime to file for Victims Compensation, however you MUST have filed a police report within 72 hours or would have been reported within this period of time except for good cause.

 

 

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