An outreach program for family violence
Volunteers with the Family Violence Council have been trained to assist the domestic violence victim in the court room. The advocates do not provide legal advice, but rather they provide information about the court process, legal resources, how to obtain an Order of Protection, accompany a victim to court, etc. In addition to support during the legal process, the advocates also help to set up a safety plan for the victim, provide information on counseling/support group opportunities, and provide other resources (such as a visit to the food pantry) that a victim may need.
The Family Violence Council provides 1-2 nights of shelter for victims who are fleeing their abuser and needs immediate shelter. This shelter is patrolled by the Collierville Police Department and is often a precursor to the Temporary shelter offered by the Family Violence Council.
The Family Violence Council provides up to 60 days of shelter for victims who are attempting to “break free” of their perpetrator. The shelter is monitored by members of the Family Violence Council as well as the Collierville Police Department. It is a fully furnished residence which can house up to two victims at a time. It is free of charge to the victim, but the victim must agree to the following rules: no visitors to the shelter, victim must let the Family Violence Council know when they are going and coming )in order to protect the victim), no contact with their perpetrator, attend counseling/support group once a week, attempt to secure a job if victim does not already have a job, and meet with a member of the Family Violence once a week to discuss progress. Additional time in the shelter may be evaluated if there is availability.
Dr. Jan Dieber, one of the Family Violence Council members, leads a support group on Tuesday evenings at Hope Presbyterian Church. The group is free to victims of domestic violence. Dr. Dieber also provides individual counseling for victims for a fee.
Court / Community Education:
The Family Violence Council provides educational materials about domestic/family violence for the community as well as speaking to various organizations in the community. Some of the organizations the Family Violence Council has spoken to are: Collierville Chamber of Commerce, Collierville Key Club, Church organizations (United Methodist Women’s groups, Faith Lutheran Woman’s group), Leadership Collierville, Community Foundation, etc.
Family Violence Council & Collierville Police Department Partnership:
The Family Violence Council has worked very hard to partner with the Collierville Police Department. Detective Mike Fry, domestic violence officer with the Collierville Police Department, is also a member of the Family Violence Council and has proposed a program to the Collierville Police Department in which the Family Violence Council has immediate contact with a victim once a police report is filed. The Family Violence Council contacts the victim one they have received a report from Detective Fry. Various resources are offered to the victim and a contact number is given for future needs.