Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2018, $660,000)
OVC’s mission is to enhance the Nation’s capacity to assist crime victims and provide leadership in changing attitudes, policies, and practices to promote justice and healing for all victims of crime. OVC achieves this mission, in part, by administering discretionary award programs supported by the federal Crime Victims Fund to develop innovative training and technical assistance, and to provide direct services to improve the overall quality of victim assistance. The purpose of the FY 2018 Enhancing Community Responses to the Opioid Crisis: Serving Our Youngest Crime Victims is to address an urgent gap in crime victim services related to the opioid epidemic and to expand upon existing or establish new programs to provide services to children and youth who are victimized as a result of the opioid crisis. The overarching goal of this program is to support children and youth who are crime victims as a result of the opioid crisis by providing direct services and support to these young victims at a community or jurisdictional level. With this award, the Youth Heartline and Sage Consulting will implement the Consortia Addressing Need (CAN) program to address the high need of families in Colfax, Taos, and Union Counties impacted by the opioid crisis. The program works to fulfill three goals: 1) Operate direct services to enhance families’ abilities to remain stable through opioid treatment and recovery through the Nurturing Parenting curriculum, 2) Expand advocacy and support for families in the court system by increasing the number of trained Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA); and 3) Establish and maintain engagement in twelve existing community partner groups in Colfax, Taos, and Union Counties that communicate family needs, identify resource gaps, and collect an evidence base to support ongoing improvements to current programs and enhance future programming. The project will deliver parenting services to 45 families, recruit and train 5 CASA volunteers, and deliver CASA services to 50 children and youth with substance abuse-related victimization in addition to offering outreach and awareness activities.