Victim Services of Leeds & Grenville (formerly VCARS) is a community-based program working in partnership with police, fire and EMS, child protection (CAS), Victim Witness Assistance Program and the local women’s shelter. We are a 24 / 7 agency that provides immediate, confidential short-term crisis intervention services, practical assistance, information, referrals and emotional support to persons affected by crime, tragedy and / or disaster.
Volunteers and staff provide assistance to individuals, families, friends, witnesses and/ or groups at the request of emergency services personnel, community services and self-referrals in order to meet an individual's unique needs; to help lessen the trauma of the experience and to help people cope with the longer term impact of what has occurred.
Crisis assistance is provided by staff and by volunteers who are carefully selected, screened and specially trained to work in their community. Victim Services of Leeds & Grenville are committed to treating individuals with courtesy, compassion, dignity and respect.
Victim Services of Leeds & Grenville is a non-profit organization funded by the Ministry of the Attorney General via the Victim Justice Fund and part of the Victim Crisis Assistance Ontario program (VCAO). While there are several Victim Service Organizations in Ontario working under the same set of standards, we are all unique to the locations that we serve.
Victim Services of Leeds & Grenville (VCARS) launched in the spring of 2005. In the beginning there were only 8 of us trained to provide on-scene assistance to victims of crime, tragedy and disaster. By the summer of 2005 we were up and running, providing assistance on weekends only. In the spring of 2006 we increased to about 20 volunteers; we began providing 24 /7 coverage shortly thereafter and haven’t looked back since!
Today we have over 30 trained volunteers working together to provide assistance within Leeds & Grenville whenever it’s needed.
Currently, our team consists of a Board of Directors, an Executive Director, a Clinical Services Manager, a Client Services Coordinator, a Youth Services Coordinator, two Emergency Response Supervisors and a large group of wonderful, committed volunteers. We are proud of our role in the community and hope to support Leeds & Grenville for many years to come.
For more information about volunteering, please check out our Volunteer page.