Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2018, $750,000)
OVCs mission is to enhance the Nations 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 funding from this award, the Marshall University Forensic Science Center will launch the West Virginia Trauma Informed Mindfulness Engagement Project for Kids (WV-TIME4K) in Cabell and Wayne Counties in West Virginia. WV-TIME4K will: (1) strategically target school age children in four public elementary schools in the target service area that have a high proportion of children of incarcerated parents, high rates of crime in local neighborhoods, high levels of court intervention, and co-occurring increases in disciplinary referrals and referrals to the State Department of Social Services; (2) provide on-site interventions for families affected by the opioid crisis at the participating schools, including individual counseling that emphasizes evidence-based mindfulness coaching, and classroom-based behavioral support for child victims; and (3) provide families with access to civil legal assistance by hosting on-site legal clinics in the schools.