Thursday, March 5, 2009

Innovative Programs - Anyone Know of Any to Add to the List?

There are many innovative programs addressing interpersonal violence and it's aftermath. We, as advocates, are inspired by learning from others who "think outside the box" and create effective initiatives to help those we advocate for.

A few exceptional programs are listed here but there are many more out there. Anyone know of an outstanding program to inspire those of us in the trenches?

>Second Chance Employment Services (SCES) is a nonprofit organization of human-resources professionals who have placed hundreds of adults in meaningful employment positions free of charge.

Our mission is to promote financial security for at-risk women and their dependents through comprehensive employment placement services.

Our beneficiaries are the abused, the elderly, welfare recipients and other financially at-risk women who seek long-term employment.

>Ahimsa House exists to help save the animal victims of domestic violence. Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women between ages 15-44 in the United States - more than car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined. There are many shelters for human domestic violence victims in Georgia, but Ahimsa House is the only domestic violence shelter for animals in this state.

>With funding from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the University of New Hampshire’s Prevention Innovations has just launched the Know Your PowerTM social marketing campaign campus wide at the university. The Know Your Power campaign is the social marketing component of the Bringing in the Bystander ProjectTM. It is the first time a comprehensive social marketing campaign focusing on teaching bystanders how to prevent or intervene in situations of sexual and intimate partner violence and stalking has been administered on a college campus. The campaign has been administered across an entire university campus as well as in neighboring downtown Durham. We are utilizing a number of different media to attract the attention of the UNH community, and we are conducting a comprehensive evaluation of the campaign to assess the campaign’s impact on UNH students.

>The Bee Kind Garden project is a therapeutic program designed to teach gentleness, kindness, and empathy to children removed from violent homes. Children are matched with a trained volunteer who gives his or her undivided attention while together they explore arts and crafts, nurture plants, and interact with child-friendly animals. Especially important is the fact that the Bee Kind Garden, located at the West Valley Outdoor Learning Center, is a safe place to be a child.
Three basic strategies are used at the Garden to help children suffering from past abuse. Child therapy is provided by licensed therapists to help the children process emotional trauma and crisis. Environmental education helps the children learn to nurture living things and find a connection to the natural world through gardening and outdoor activities. Animal Interaction helps children learn kindness and empathy, build trust, and form healthy relationships by allowing them to interact with child-friendly animals. In sharing all these experiences with their own supportive volunteer, each child is able to explore and experience the dynamics of friendship.

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