Establishing and Maintaining a Volunteer Victim Advocate Program to Assist Victims of Domestic Violence in the U.S. Army
Source: Military Medicine, Volume 173, Number 9, September 2008 , pp. 860-864(5)
Abstract:A descriptive evaluation of a volunteer victim advocacy (VA) program was conducted to assist domestic violence victims on the scene of a domestic violence incident on a 24-hour per day basis at a U.S. Army installation. A total of 87 volunteers contributed data to this evaluation. The VAs conducted on-the-spot client safety planning using risk factor assessment. Additional information was given to the client about post programs and services. VAs were evaluated and monitored through initial, periodic, and exit interviews. They were asked about their training needs, the most difficult situations they confronted, what they did best, and whether the VA program met their personal needs. While the Army supports victim advocacy by regulation, it often does not provide sufficient funds to support the hiring of the necessary staff. Hence, a volunteer program may be the only feasible approach to provide advocacy assistance for abused spouses in the Army above a minimum level. Drawing on the services of trained volunteers allowed the Family Advocacy Program at this installation to accomplish its mandated mission. Suggestions for further research in VA programs are presented.
Document Type: Research article
Affiliations: 1: Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress, Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD 20814. 2: Data Manager, Victim Advocacy Program, Fort Polk, LA 71459-5227. 3: LCSW, Family Advocacy Program Manager, Fort Polk, LA 71459-5227. 4: Volunteer Coordinator, Victim Advocacy Program, Fort Polk, LA 71459-5227.
Publication date: 2008-09-01
- Military Medicine is the Association's official monthly journal. The objective of the Journal is to promote awareness of Federal medicine by providing a forum for responsible discussion of common ideas and problems relevant to Federal healthcare. Its mission is: To increase healthcare education by providing scientific and other information to its readers; to facilitate communication; and to offer a prestige publication for members' writings.
Military Medicine's 5-year Impact Factor: 1.061
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