Federal grants available to provide crime victim services

Local organizations across the state will be able to apply for $3.75 million in federal grants to provide services for supervised visitation and safe exchange programs, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced last Thurday.

The MDHHS Division of Victim Services has posted its second of five Requests for Proposals (RFPs) for Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) funding. The division is accepting proposals from organizations that would expand and enhance their existing supervised visitation and safe exchange service for crime victims. MDHHS will award three- to five-year U.S. Department of Justice grants of $50,000 to $750,000.

Supervised visitation and safe exchange programs provide parents who may present a risk to their children or to another parent the opportunity to have parent-child contact monitored by an appropriate third party. Visitation centers have begun to emerge as a service for some families engaged in child custody disputes and for
families with histories of domestic violence and other allegations of parental misconduct.

Questions about the RFP for supervised visitation and safe exchange programs can be emailed to MDHHS-CVSC-VOCA-GRANTS@michigan.gov and must be submitted by Friday, April 20, by 5 p.m. The deadline for proposals is Thursday, May 10, by 3 p.m.

The remaining three RFPs will be available in April and May and will focus on sexual assault services, tribal victim services and children’s advocacy center development. Applicant agencies must be public or non-profit organizations – including faith-based entities and American Indian tribes – that provide direct services to crime victims. The purpose of the funding is to expand and enhance services to victims of crime, such as responding to the immediate needs of crime victims, reducing psychological consequences of victimization and helping restore victims’ sense of dignity and self-esteem.

For additional information or to apply, visit the MI E-Grants website and select the “About EGrAMS” link on the left panel to access the Crime Victims Agreement training manual. The RFP is located under “Legal and Policy Affairs” in the Current Grants section.

For additional information about Michigan’s Division of Victim Services, visit Michigan.gov/crimevictims.

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