OVC conveys its condolences to the victims of the shootings at the movie theater in Lafayette, their families, the people of Louisiana, and everyone across the Nation who joins in the grief felt by this community. We share the following resources that may be able to help victims and their families, as well as the victim service providers that are assisting them: http://ovc.gov/news/lafayette.html (Posted July 24, 2015)
OVC conveys its condolences to the victims of the shootings at two military sites in Chattanooga, their families, the people of Tennessee, and the many U.S. citizens grieving nationwide. The following resources may be able to help victims and their families, as well as the victim service providers that are assisting them: http://ovc.gov/news/chattanooga.html (Posted July 20, 2015)
Learn about the progress being made to improve services to victims of human trafficking in FYs 2013-2014 Federal Strategic Action Plan Status Report. Based on the goals and objectives identified in the Federal Strategic Action Plan on Services for Victims of Human Trafficking in the United States, 2013–2017, released by the White House in January of 2014, this status report identifies actions taken during fiscal years 2013-2014 to-
The summer edition of OVC News & Program Updates is now available online. Read a message from Director Joye Frost, review the Vision 21 grant awardees, and learn more about the impactful work OVC is doing on behalf of victims and victim service providers. (Posted June 22, 2015)
We at OVC convey our deepest sympathies to the victims of the Charleston shootings, their families and friends, the people of South Carolina, and those in mourning throughout the nation. The following resources may be able to help victims and their families, as well as the victim service providers that are assisting them: http://ovc.gov/news/charleston_church_tragedy.html (Posted June 18, 2015)
OVC will award each eligible state victim assistance program a noncompetitive discretionary grant to support training and technical assistance to VOCA victim assistance service providers and others who work with crime victims. Uses for these additional funds include, but are not limited to, enhancing existing State Victim Assistance Academies (SVAAs) or establishing new SVAAs; and supporting statewide training initiatives, crime victim related conferences, basic training for new programs for underserved victims, and scholarships to service providers and others who work with crime victims. Apply by July 1, 2015. (Posted June 4, 2015)
Submit Your Nominations for the 2016 National Crime Victims’ Service Awards by July 30, 2015. Each year, OVC recognizes extraordinary individuals, organizations, teams, and programs that demonstrate outstanding achievements in supporting victims and victim services. The recipients are honored at the National Crime Victims’ Service Awards Ceremony in Washington, D.C.
This year, OVC announces a new award category, the Tomorrow’s Leaders Award. This award seeks to honor and highlight youth up to age 24 years who have dedicated their efforts to supporting victims of crime. Learn more.
View past recipients and, if you know a similarly deserving individual, group, team, or program, submit a nomination by July 30, 2015.
Visit the National Crime Victims’ Rights Week (NCVRW) Web site for details about the 2016 NCVRW observation, April 10 - 16, 2016, and the Awards Ceremony as they become available. (Posted June 1, 2015)
One discretionary grant in the amount of $175,000 will be awarded to plan and administer the National Joint Training Conference for VOCA Victim Assistance and Victim Compensation Administrators, to be held in 2016. This 2.5-day conference will provide training and technical assistance for Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) administrators, staff, and board members; and facilitate a forum for the presentation of state issues and practices. The conference will employ lectures, panels, workshops, and forums to explore ways to improve the delivery of crime victim services; provide an opportunity for VOCA administrators to exchange information, views, and experiences; and provide training and technical assistance on effective program operations. Apply by July 13, 2015. (Posted May 28, 2015)
OVC will award each eligible state victim compensation program an annual VOCA Victim Compensation Formula grant equal to 60 percent of what the state spent in state-funded benefits 2 years previously, other than amounts awarded for property damage. Funds under this program shall be used by the states and territories for awards of compensation benefits to crime victims, with the following exception: states may retain up to 5 percent of their total grant for administrative and training purposes. Apply by July 1, 2015. (Posted May 22, 2015)
OVC will award each eligible state victim compensation program an annual VOCA Victim Assistance Formula grant to support eligible crime victim assistance programs in that state or territory. Funds under this program shall be used by the states and territories to support eligible crime victim assistance programs that provide direct services to crime victims with the following exception: states may retain up to 5 percent of their total grant for administrative and training purposes. Apply by July 2, 2015. (Posted May 22, 2015)
OVC will make one award of up to $2,000,000 to improve access to services for American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) victims of crime by cataloguing existing comprehensive services. Through this project, OVC will support the creation of a user-friendly, state-of-the-art resource that empowers victims to seek comprehensive services; support victim service providers in their efforts to expand their outreach on behalf of victims to ensure that services provided reflect the myriad needs of AI/AN crime victims; and provide a clear picture of service gaps for private, federal, and state funders. Apply by July 2, 2015. (Posted May 19, 2015)
*For additional information about how to apply to this solicitation, please see Pre-Application Conference Calls Q&A.
OVC will make up to one award of up to $150,000 for a fellowship that will focus on the issues of victims of elder abuse and elder financial exploitation. The fellowship recipient will work in the Elder Justice Initiative (EJI) of the Department of Justice Civil Division, in Washington, D.C. EJI provides resources to victims of elder abuse and financial exploitation and their families; practitioners who serve those victims; law enforcement agencies and prosecutors who respond to victims of elder abuse and financial exploitation; and researchers seeking to understand and address elder abuse and financial exploitation. Visit the Jobs & Fellowships section of the OVC Web site for general information about OVC's fellowship program. Apply by July 2, 2015. (Posted May 18, 2015)
OVC will make one award of up to $200,000 to identify the needs of families of overseas hostages, kidnapping victims, and returned hostages; and provide information and referrals to available services, assistance, and emotional support as they navigate the complex issues that arise in the aftermath of the kidnapping or hostage-taking. Applicants must demonstrate an established capacity to operate on a national level, as well as knowledge of the victim services field and the ability to coordinate and collaborate with, and provide referrals to, available resources and services throughout the United States, including those at the local level, to support the family members of these victims and returned hostages. Apply by July 2, 2015. (Posted May 18, 2015)
On April 29, 2015, Loretta E. Lynch was sworn in by Vice President Joe Biden as the 83rd Attorney General of the United States. In her remarks, Attorney General Lynch stated that we “can imbue our criminal justice system with both strength and fairness, for the protection of both the needs of victims and the rights of all. We can restore trust and faith both in our laws and in those of us who enforce them. We can protect the most vulnerable among us from the scourge of modern-day slavery – so antithetical to the values forged in blood in this country."
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OVC will make one award of up to $1,000,000 to a national-scope organization to enhance training, technical assistance, public awareness, and capacity-building resources on language access for victim service providers and allied professionals. The objectives of this program are to improve access to services for crime victims who are deaf or hard-of-hearing, or who have limited English proficiency; increase victim service providers' and allied professionals' understanding of their legal and ethical obligations related to language access; and produce high-quality training, technical assistance, online resources, tools, and products to improve language access. Apply by June 24, 2015. (Posted May 8, 2015)
OVC will make one award of up to $150,000 to an individual that will work with OVC to develop and implement a strategic initiative that ensures OVC's products, programs, and services are accessible to individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing, and those with Limited English Proficiency (LEP). Applicants must be individuals (organizations are not eligible to apply) who have prior experience with language access and victim services initiatives, especially for deaf, hard-of-hearing, and/or LEP communities. Apply by June 24, 2015. (Posted May 8, 2015)
Through cooperative agreements in up to 8 program areas, OVC will provide funding to enhance and transform services for victims of crime and to reach and serve more crime victims and address gaps in the crime victims’ field. OVC will consider proposals that provide training, technical assistance, capacity building, assessment, or strategic planning with a focus on identifying and addressing gaps in knowledge, assessing or developing and evaluating innovative practices, developing evidence-based training and technical assistance, or developing strategic approaches of leveraging resources to reach and serve more victims. Apply by June 18, 2015. (Posted May 4, 2015)
OVC will make several awards of up to $60,000 each to state VOCA compensation programs to enhance data collection efforts to increase the accuracy of administrative reporting through the OVC Performance Management Tool. Proposals must demonstrate how the funding would improve the state’s data collection capacity to satisfy the new OVC reporting requirements. Apply by June 17, 2015. (Posted May 4, 2015)
OVC will make one award of up to $1,000,000 to a training and technical assistance provider to develop tools and resources to replicate, evaluate, support, and sustain State Victim Assistance Academies (SVAA). SVAAs provide comprehensive, academically based, fundamental education and training for victim service providers and allied professionals to ensure that all crime victims receive the culturally competent, trauma-informed services they need. Apply by June 15, 2015. (Posted May 1, 2015)
OVC will make up to one award of up to $500,000 for a joint fellowship program with BJS focused on the translation and dissemination of statistical data used by the victim service field. The individual awarded funding under this fellowship program will work with both OVC and BJS to improve the synthesis and translation of social science research and statistical findings to inform practice and policies in the victim services field. Visit the Jobs & Fellowships section of the OVC Web site for general information about OVC's fellowship program. Apply by June 15, 2015. (Posted May 1, 2015)
OVC will make several awards of up to $1,000,000 each to improve responses to male survivors of violence, particularly boys and young men of color, and their families, and to dedicate technical assistance to support these efforts. OVC is particularly interested in strengthening victim service providers’ knowledge and skills, resulting in innovative programs and practices that foster a better understanding among criminal and juvenile justice systems and inform service providers about the needs and rights of these victims. Both OVC and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention will provide oversight for all of the projects funded through this solicitation. Apply by June 17, 2015. (Posted May 1, 2015)br>
*For additional information about how to apply to this solicitation, please see the Supporting Male Survivors of Violence Solicitation Q&A and Additional Participant Questions & Answers.
OVC will award up to $375,000 to provide financial and technical assistance to approximately 60 communities nationwide to conduct 2016 National Crime Victims' Rights Week (NCVRW) Community Awareness Projects (CAP) on crime victims' rights and services in their jurisdictions during 2016 NCVRW. The selected applicant must be positioned to undertake a nationwide solicitation for proposals and the delivery of technical assistance to recipient organizations; capable of marketing the project so that it meets the goal of funding a project in every state; and able to assemble a group of expert reviewers who are familiar with NCVRW and the victim assistance field, and who are willing to volunteer their services to review every application received and be a part of the selection process. Apply by June 15, 2015. (Posted April 30, 2015)
OVC will make one award of up to $700,000 to update the SART Toolkit: Resources for Sexual Assault Response Teams (SART Toolkit) to ensure that it contains the most current research, practices, and information to support sexual assault victims—particularly underserved populations. The SART Toolkit is an online resource for information and tools to establish, strengthen, and sustain sexual assault response teams in a variety of settings. Eligible applicants are limited to organizations with national-scope expertise on sexual assault and a track record of developing national-scope technical assistance resources, and that have existing strong relationships with a range of victim-serving organizations at the local, tribal, state, and federal levels. Apply by June 8, 2015. (Posted April 22, 2015)
Attorney General Eric Holder honored 12 individuals, programs, teams, and organizations during the April 21st National Crime Victims’ Service Awards Ceremony. Karol Mason, Assistant Attorney General, Office of Justice Programs, and Joye Frost, OVC Director, also addressed attendees at this annual event that honors extraordinary service to crime victims. If you missed the event or would like to learn more, visit:
Awards of up to $500,000 will be made to expand access to comprehensive legal services for victims of human trafficking through training and technical assistance. Trafficking victims face an array of legal challenges and access to trained legal counsel assists victims in increasing their safety, financial security, independence, and self-sufficiency. This program seeks to expand the capacity of the existing legal services network to meet these critical needs. Apply by June 18, 2015. (Posted April 17, 2015)
Awards of up to $600,000 will be made to enhance the quality and quantity of specialized services available to assist victims of human trafficking including services for underserved victims of human trafficking. Funding will also support efforts to increase the capacity of communities to respond to human trafficking victims through the development of interagency partnerships, professional training, and public awareness activities. Apply by June 1, 2015. (Posted April 16, 2015)
Awards of up to $750,000 will be made to enhance the quality and quantity of services available to assist all victims of human trafficking in achieving their goals. Funding will support interagency collaboration and the coordinated community response to victims of human trafficking and the provision of high-quality services that address the individualized needs of trafficking victims. Apply by June 1, 2015. (Posted April 16, 2015)
One cooperative agreement of up to $450,000 will be awarded to plan and conduct, in cooperation with OVC, the 15th National Indian Nations Conference: Justice for Victims of Crime, which will take place in 2016. The goal of this project is to provide timely training, information about best practices, and resources to increase and enhance the skills of victim service providers, criminal justice professionals, and other allied professionals in order to improve their ability to respond to the needs of American Indian and Alaska Native crime victims. Apply by June 1, 2015. (Posted April 14, 2015)
OVC will make two awards of up to $1,500,000 each to support the training and technical assistance needs of American Indian and Alaska Native communities that receive grant funds from OVC under Purpose Area 6 (Children's Justice Act Partnerships for Indian Communities) and Purpose Area 7 (Comprehensive Tribal Victim Assistance Program) of the Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation, as well as Vision 21 Community Wellness Centers. Deadline: June 1, 2015. (Posted April 14, 2015)
On March 26, 2015, OVC Director Joye Frost participated in an interview for The Social Network Show, an online radio series sponsored by the National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC) which promotes best practices in cyber safety, crime prevention, and social justice issues.
In this interview, Director Frost provides information on the ways OVC enhances the work of national, state, and local agencies and organizations to assist crime victims and how the Crime Victims Fund further supports these efforts.
Director Frost highlights that everyone has a role in supporting crime victims, and that support can come from service providers, friends, family, and neighbors. This is also reflected in the 2015 NCVRW theme—Engaging Communities. Empowering Victims.—which emphasizes the role of the entire community—individually and collectively—to support victims of crime and empower them to begin their healing from their victimization. This year’s National Crime Victims’ Rights Week (NCVRW) will be held April 19 - 25, and more information can be found at ovc.ncjrs.gov/NCVRW.
Listen to this interview on The Social Network Show co-hosted by Dr. Jane Karwoski and NCPC Senior Communications Director Michelle Boykins. (Posted March 26, 2015)
The Office for Victims of Crime (OVC), Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice, in partnership with the National Center for Victims of Crime (NCVC), is pleased to announce the availability of the entire National Crime Victims’ Rights Week Resource Guide EN ESPAÑOL (in Spanish) online. For the first time in the history of the Resource Guide the Statistical Overviews have been translated into Spanish.
This user-friendly package contains everything you need to host and promote NCVRW in your community and to promote victims’ rights throughout the year. This year’s theme—Engaging Communities. Empowering Victims.—emphasizes the role of the entire community, individually and collectively, as we support victims of crime and empower them to direct their own recovery. Included in the Resource Guide are campaign materials such as artwork, educational content, helpful hints, and a Theme Video that highlights the importance of building partnerships with community leaders and organizations.
Join OVC in our mission to help communities and victim assistance providers promote awareness of crime victim issues. Access both the English and Spanish versions of the Resource Guide online today. (Posted March 23, 2015)
OVC will make one award of up to $300,000 to develop the 2016 National Crime Victims’ Rights Week (NCVRW) Resource Guide. The comprehensive Resource Guide will support victim service providers, victim advocates, allied professionals, and the general public in their efforts to heighten awareness of crime victim issues nationwide during NCVRW in April 2016, and throughout the year. Deadline: April 29, 2015. (Posted March 13, 2015)
OVC and BJA will award between $600,000 and $900,000 to law enforcement agencies and victim service providers to work collaboratively to develop and enhance multidisciplinary human trafficking task forces that combat sex and labor trafficking of foreign nationals and U.S. citizens of all sexes and ages. Eligible applicants are law enforcement agencies and victim service providers who submit separate but coordinated proposals that outline how the funding will be used to implement the human trafficking task force specified within the application. Deadline: May 11, 2015. (Posted March 11, 2015)
The National Crime Victims' Service Awards Ceremony will be held April 21, 2015, in Washington, D.C. During the ceremony, OVC will recognize individuals and organizations that have demonstrated outstanding service in supporting crime victims and victim services. The event is free and open to the public; however, registration is required.
For more information about this event and to register, visit www.ncvrw.org by Friday, April 17, 2015. (Posted February 10, 2015)
Join us, as OVC holds the third in a series of forums addressing OVC's Vision 21 initiative on Thursday, February 19, 2015, from 10:00-11:30 a.m. eastern time, at the Office of Justice Programs (third floor main ballroom) in Washington, DC. We encourage all victim-focused services providers, researchers, and policymakers to attend, A Data-Driven Approach to Victim Services, which underscores the importance of researcher-practitioner partnerships and a data-driven approach to policy decisions impacting victims of crime.
Come hear Heather Warnken, Esq., LL.M., Legal Policy Associate at the Chief Earl Warren Institute on Law and Social Policy at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law, as she presents her statewide research findings on:
For more information, or to RSVP, contact Heidi Fam at firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Tuesday, February 17, 2015. Please include your name, title, organization and state in your response. (Posted February 3, 2015)
OVC is pleased to announce that the 2015 National Crime Victims’ Rights Week (NCVRW) Resource Guide is now available online. This user-friendly package contains everything you need to host and promote NCVRW in your community. This year’s theme—Engaging Communities. Empowering Victims.—emphasizes the role of the entire community, individually and collectively, as we support victims of crime and empower them to direct their own recovery.
Included in the Resource Guide are campaign materials including artwork and the theme video, educational content, helpful hints, and for the first time ever, a new statistical overview. These materials can also be downloaded for use offline.
Join OVC in our mission to help communities and victim assistance providers promote awareness of crime victim issues. Access the Resource Guide online today. (Posted January 22, 2015)
In October 2014, OVC and the Bureau of Justice Assistance released the newly expanded and enhanced Human Trafficking Task Force e-Guide and launched a new, mobile-friendly Human Trafficking Web site that provides human trafficking information for victims and survivors, victim service providers, law enforcement, and allied professionals.
Visit the Human Trafficking Web site to:
These resources have been prepared to help strengthen the knowledge and skills needed to assist victims of human trafficking. Take advantage of both today! (Posted January 8, 2015)
A newly released video from the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) explores how the International Terrorism Victim Expense Reimbursement Program (ITVERP) may provide financial assistance to victims of international terrorism and their families.
Administered by OVC, ITVERP is the only federal, direct-service program that provides reimbursement for qualifying expenses to qualified U.S. citizens and U.S. government employees who suffered direct physical or emotional injury from an act of international terrorism while outside the United States.
This brief video from OVC highlights key program features and includes testimonials from individuals who have received ITVERP benefits. You can view the video online and access further information about the program on the OVC ITVERP Web site. (Posted January 5, 2015)
Between 2010 and 2013, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) took action on fraudulent schemes that affected nearly 30,000 investors, with losses totaling more than $1 billion. To help arm every day consumers with the tools to reduce the risk of falling victim to fraud, the CFTC has launched SmartCheck.CFTC.gov.
The SmartCheck Web site provides educational tools to reduce financial and investment fraud. In addition to background check tools, the newly launched Web site contains a variety of resources, including interactive videos that allow users to take part in a fictional financial scenario to help investors identify potential fraudulent schemes and make the best financial decision.
OVC works to address the needs of fraud victims, and encourages consumers to take advantage of these new tools. Visit the SmartCheck Web site to access effective tools to check backgrounds of financial professionals and access the full range of resources. (Posted January 2, 2015).
The National Adult Protective Service (APS) Training Project was created to strengthen the capacity of APS workers and their partners to serve victims of elder abuse. With funding from OVC, the Academy for Professional Excellence of the School of Social Work at San Diego State University developed curricula for the following APS trainings:
Instructor Led Training
The instructor led trainings include a PowerPoint presentation, participant and trainer manuals, an evaluation manual, an on-the-job practice workbook, and information about continuing education. Trainings and eLearning sessions are now available for use and are part of a complete set of trainings on the National Adult Protective Services Association Core Competencies for APS Workers.(Posted December 15, 2015)
The National Crime Prevention Council, with support from OVC grant funds, released the Mortgage Fraud Online Toolkit. The toolkit offers information, tip sheets, and training resources for victim service providers and allied professionals to build understanding about different types of mortgage fraud, how to best serve victims, and ways to raise awareness in the community. Victims of mortgage fraud can also use this toolkit to help document and report the crime, communicate with creditors, and limit the damage to their future financial health. (Posted November 3, 2015)
The Identity Theft Resource Center has released a free mobile app now available for download on Apple and Android devices. The ID Theft Help App, funded by a grant from OVC, provides resources for identity theft victims, including direct access to victim advisors through a 24/7 call center or live chat.
This app can help users address identity theft issues, such as a stolen wallet or unauthorized credit card purchases. The app also offers educational tools on how to protect yourself against identity theft, including best practices for public WiFi protection. Visit the Identity Theft Resource Center to learn more and download the app. (Posted September 25, 2015)
With support from an OVC Vision 21 grant, RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) recently launched services to provide free, confidential support for Spanish-speaking survivors of sexual assault through the RAINN operated National Sexual Assault Online Hotline (La Línea de Ayuda Nacional Online del Asalto Sexual). In addition to services in English, Spanish-language survivors and their loved ones can receive support from trained support specialists through the Online Hotline or by calling RAINN at 1–800–656–HOPE (4673).
OVC Director Joye E. Frost states that “This RAINN initiative embodies the kind of work the field must undertake to ensure that all crime victims have access not only to services, but access that is linguistically accessible and culturally competent. The hotline’s new Spanish-language service exemplifies our shared commitment to reaching under-served victims through appropriate and victim-centered services.”
Access the hotline at: https://ohl.rainn.org/es/. (Posted May 12, 2015)
When using technology, both victim advocates and survivors need to consider safety, privacy, and security. The National Network to End Domestic Violence's Safety Net Project develops resources and information on the use of technology for survivors of survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and trafficking and the agencies that support them. With support from OVC, the Safety Net Project created the following resources –
View these and other Safety Net Project materials online. (Posted May 1, 2015)
On January 5, 2015, Jean Bruggeman, OVC's Human Trafficking Fellow, wrote a blog post for the Office of Justice Programs (OJP) Diagnostic Center on the need for a multi-pronged approach to combatting human trafficking. Because traffickers can be part of a violent gang, international network, or even the victims' families, a variety of techniques are needed to hold traffickers accountable, stop victimization, and support the survivors. Read the blog post now to discover new resources for law enforcement, service providers, survivors, and allied professionals. Learn more about the OJP Diagnostic Center. (Posted January 8, 2015)