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A Brief History of OVS Victim Service Academy Trainings

Traumatic events are common in modern life, whether that means surviving a disaster, suffering economic hardship or being the victim of a crime. Virtually everyone who goes through a disturbing experience is likely to have a range of post-traumatic reactions and even when practical needs are being attended to, these psychological reactions can delay recovery.

To help address the underlying needs of crime victims, in 2016, the New York State Office of Victim Services and the Institute for Disaster Mental Health at SUNY New Paltz partnered to offer Victim Service Academy Trainings. Offered more than a dozen times since and hosted across New York State, Victim Service Academy Trainings have provided alumni a foundation of skills built on three key topics:

  • Basic Helping Skills & Psychological First Aid

  • Working with Specific Populations

  • Occupational Hazards and Self-Care   


Now a pillar of training offerings from OVS, Victim Service Academy Trainings have become an essential training opportunity for newer victim service professionals, providing basic early supports and the ability to learn self-care practices to help handle profession stressors that come from working with victims of crime.

About Victim Service Academy Trainings

The New York State Office of Victim Services has a three-tiered mission to provide compensation to innocent victims of crime, fund direct services to crime victims through a network of community-based programs and to advocate for the rights of all innocent victims of crime. For more information about services offered by OVS, including eligibility guidelines and a list of victim assistance programs that provide direct help to crime victims across all 62 counties in New York, visit the agency’s website or call 1-800-247-8035.

About OVS

Established in 2004, the Institute for Disaster Mental Health teaches evidence-based disaster mental health interventions to help to prepare students, community members, professionals to care for others following a disaster. The school’s programs include developing and presenting professional trainings in disaster mental health; and research and dissemination on training needs to improve community preparedness. The school also hosts a conference that brings experts in the field to the New Paltz campus annually.

About IDMH

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