It’s good news for Victim Services of Sarnia Lambton: notification that the Ministry of the Attorney General has announced secured funding through 2014.
So notes Colleen Sim, the group’s executive director.
But Sim is taking the opportunity to invite “caring, good listeners” to join the team of volunteer crisis responders.
“There has never been a better time to join our team,” notes Sim, who works out of the Sarnia Police headquarters on Christina St. N. “With online modules to complement traditional classroom sessions, (volunteers) receive free and effective training.”
Volunteer training starts in the spring, but Sim is urging those interested to call the organization at 519-344-8861, ext. 5238.
Established in 1990 as “Sarnia Victim Care,” the organization was initially a joint community project of the Salvation Army and the Sarnia Police Service, with funding provided by the Salvation Army and the United Way of Sarnia-Lambton.
In 1995 Victim Services was able to expand to work in cooperation with South Lambton Ontario Provincial Police and by November 1996, Sarnia-Lambton was chosen as one of eight sites across the province to receive annualized funding from the Province of Ontario for the VCARS (Victim Crisis Assistance Response Service).
Since then, Victim Services has been incorporated as a non-profit service operating with a board of directors and received charitable status on April 1, 1998.
The organization provides 24-hour service throughout Lambton County, working closely with the Sarnia Police Service, the OPP, Walpole Island Police Service and Anishinabek First Nation Police Service (which serves Kettle Point).
Volunteer Crisis Responders across the county donate approximately 30,000 hours of service each year.