October 3, 2012 —
The Victims Intervention Program (VIP) is seeking funding from the federal government for its Services Training Officers Prosecutors (STOP) program. The organization hopes to receive $375,000 over three years from the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) which is mainly a federal program, and according to a formula from the funding source, victim services receive 41% of funding, prosecution gets 31% and 28% goes to law enforcement.
“This funding will be applied county-wide,” said Micelle Minor-Wolfe, the executive director of VIP. “Even though we have not received funding for it, we will continue our hotline for victims of violent crimes.”
The hotline operates 24-hours a day.
Minor-Wolfe was accompanied by Janine Edwards, county district attorney, who enthusiastically supports the program.
“This is my first time through this application process, so I really appreciate the efficiency and skill of Michelle, who is doing a great job,” Edwards said.
“The federal government is our chief source of funds although we go to the state for some and we raise funds ourselves to pay for programs,” she said.
Services the organization offers include: crisis intervention, which is mainly directed to women who are threatened; individual and group counseling for the victims of crimes, not just domestic crimes; and an emergency shelter for individuals and families.
“We help victims of all crimes, not just domestic crimes and victims of all homicides,” she said.
Because many victims lack transportation, the program reaches out to victims wherever they live.
“We are hoping for 100% of the funding that we qualify for, though we might not get it,” Minor-Wolfe said. “There is a lot of competition for these funds.”
Go to www.vipempowers.org  for more information, or call, 570/253-4433.