Important note: the following recommendation was approved by the Board of Supervisors on April 11, 2017:
DISTRICT 4 (Supervisor Warren Slocum) FY 2016-17 Request One-Time Grant of $34,000 in Measure K Funds to Community Overcoming Relationship Abuse (CORA)
East Palo Alto residents as well as teens countywide have unique needs with regard to domestic violence outreach and intervention. These needs create unique challenges in accessing services For the East Palo Alto community in particular, these challenges may include language barriers, immigration status, lack of transportation; and for teens generally these challenges may include concerns about social stigma, lack of parental support or awareness. Taken together, these challenges are cause for great concern.
Nationwide, domestic violence is already one of the most under reported crimes. Fear, shame, and a lack of knowledge about available services makes it difficult even for those brave enough to request help. This pilot effort will offer in-person domestic violence peer- counseling, safety planning, education, risk assessment, and referral. All persons will also receive referrals and access to CORA’s free, multilingual, trauma-informed wrap-around services including housing, mental health counseling, children’s programming and legal services. Research shows that full access to these services decreases future victimization and increases safety for residents at risk of domestic violence.
The Community-Based Advocacy Coordinator will supervise the two community-based advocacy pilot efforts being launched. The Coordinator will supervise one advocate located in East Palo Alto to serve the East Palo Alto community generally and another advocate who will be available through a partnership with the District Attorney’s Office to support teens in schools throughout the county.
The District Attorney’s Office Victim Advocate will be stationed at the juvenile branch of the court. When the Advocate determines the youth is a victim of sexual violence, intimate partner violence/domestic violence, and/or commercial sexual exploitation of children, and the youth is in need of adjunct services, the Advocate will call CORA or Rape Trauma Services for assistance. CORA’s role will be to provide crisis intervention, advocacy, and peer counseling through a dedicated specialist for youth who are victims of, or at risk for, relationship violence.
These advocates will assess the community needs with regard to domestic violence outreach and intervention, provide one-on-one, culturally and linguistically appropriate support, educate the community about services available to them and enhance understanding of the dangers and dynamics of domestic violence. The Coordinator will ensure that the needs of these communities are being effectively being met.
East Palo Alto:
• Measure 1: 100% of EPA residents who engage with the Community Advocate will be provided with resource information and have an opportunity to formalize a safety plan.
• Measure 2: 50% of EPA residents served will receive at least one referral to CORA’s wrap-around services (e.g. mental health, legal, housing, etc.) or other community-based resources.
• Measure 3: 50% of those receiving referrals will access the referral within 30 days of receiving the referral.
• Measure 4: 90% of program participants will show an increased understanding of community resources available to victims of domestic violence
• Measure 5: 90% of participants will show an increase in domestic violence related knowledge or skills to support survivors
• Measure 1: 50 teens will be assisted through CORA’s Outreach and Crisis Intervention Program
• Measure 2: 100% of teens who engage with the teen Advocate receive resource information and have an opportunity to formalize a safety plan.
• Measure 3: 50% of teens served will receive at least one referral to CORA’s wrap-around services (e.g. mental health, legal, housing, etc.) or other community-based resources
• Measure 4: 80% of workshop participants will show an increase in domestic violence related knowledge or skills to support survivors
Approximately 50 teens (countywide) and 40 East Palo Alto residents are expected to be served by June 30, 2017.
Important note: this is a copy of the official report -- item 8 on the Board's agenda.