Support Teens at Risk (STAR) Program
Unique to VSLG, our STAR Program was created in response to a growing awareness that youth victims faced numerous challenges in accessing support services that they may require. Originally a pilot project, the program underwent a formal evaluation process where evidence was demonstrated that it may increase positive outcomes, specifically for girls.
Our Youth Outreach Services worker will provide crisis response, on-scene support, information, safety planning and referral services to youth victims of crime and trauma typically in a high school setting. This may include accompaniment to police stations for the purposes of disclosure or investigation, accompaniment to court, transportation to counseling services, referrals to specialized counseling services when required, specialized kits of information specific to youth and related to coping, safety planning, ongoing emotional support and assistance with referrals to community based programs. Referrals for services related to this program often come from various high schools, police, self-referrals and community service providers.
VSLG staff have presented the STAR program at the National Sexual Violence Resource Centre's yearly US symposium in Pennsylvania, the only Canadians to have been invited. We have since been invited back and the program has been shared with the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCARS)