Submitted Summaries of Programs (Reviews)
Between April 10 and April 16 (Review Summaries):
Submit your review summary for your assigned program via the “Submit Your Summary link below. Once it is submitted, it will appear on the list below the link. You are free to read other summaries that have been submitted at this point, but comments will not open until April 17.
Between April 17 and May 1 (Evaluations):
Promoting Safety for Victims of Domestic Abuse
Family Violence Project
Family Violence Project is the only organization providing domestic violence resources in Somerset and Kennebec counties. This specific program within FVP focuses on the critical work of increasing the safety of domestic violence victims by providing individual advocacy, safety planning, support groups, court advocacy—including assistance with obtaining protection from abuse orders, and the connection of victims/survivors with other needed local resources to meet their basic needs.
Other notable information from the application:
• The work of the advocate is challenging, complicated and multi-dimensional. They work with other community partners in a Coordinated Community Response model that involves monthly task force meetings in Kennebec and Somerset counties to optimize client services and safety.
• The advocates have had specialized training in use of a Danger Assessment tool that assists in identifying clients who have high risk factors for severe injury and homicide. These victims are referred to the high-risk response team (partners from law enforcement, probation, prosecution, batterer intervention, advocacy) to increase victim safety and perpetrator accountability.
• The program is supporting outreach offices and advocates in both Somerset and Northern Kennebec counties. Failure to get adequate funding could lead to closure of one of these offices.
• FVP is partnered with Pine Tree Legal Association, providing legal resources for some of the more complex and dangerous civil cases.
Alignment within UWMM’s focus areas:
This program provides a direct service in behavioral and/or physical health areas, aligning with the focus area of Health.
• Goals/outcomes are well-defined and run at a high level of effectiveness and efficiency.
• FVP is optimizing the training and use of volunteers which is important in leveraging its resources and sustaining its programs.
• Difficult to evaluate from financial information available on application. From the financial evaluation worksheet, the percentage of expenses going to program operations is very good.
Site Visit/Phone Conversation Notes:
I visited the Waterville office of FVP and met with staff members including an outreach advocate who is a direct provider of the safety promotion services funded by this program. We discussed a number of subjects including:
• the structure of the organization and the variety of services provided, with safety always a critical bottom line and all services a necessary component to reach that goal,
• the need for coordinated services within the organization (education, advocacy, support groups, etc.) to connect with victims of domestic violence and deliver the support they need to identify and negotiate their options,
• the way FVP coordinates its services with the other organizations that interface with victims of domestic violence including law enforcement and the legal system,
• the importance of safety planning,
• the special training and tools used by advocates in identifying factors that indicate an increased risk of homicide for victims and referring these individuals to the high-risk response team,
• FVP has been a partner with United Way for 40 years. The level of funding for FVP has been gradually dropping, leading to a reduction in staff and a significant strain on maintaining the optimal level of community services.
I was very impressed with the obvious shared vision, dedication to services, and the hard work demonstrated by all the staff with whom I spoke. The outreach advocate was an experienced and insightful person who had a deep fund of knowledge. She also had appreciation for the complex web of domestic violence, its effect on victims, and the means to provide victim support and assistance in navigating through the complex array of other adjunctive systems, including the legal system.
I believe they are doing the most with the resources they have at hand delivering services that are critical in striving for the safety of, and the very lives of victims of domestic violence in our community. The excellent job FVP has been doing for 40 years, the way their services are coordinated with other community services, the challenges of past declines in United Way Funding, the fact that they are the only resource for these services in this area and that United Way funding provides not only support for direct services but also a match for state grant funds must all be considered in a funding decision.
My primary outstanding concerns are situational rather than concerns with the organization itself. Particularly, the challenges FVP faces in continuing its vital community services. The need to effectively cover a wide geographic area necessitates regional offices to be accessible to clients who often have transportation challenges and to have advocates geographically placed to provide onsite support in court and other locations where their services are needed. Failure to obtain full funding (a return to the most recent past funding level) will force the closure of one of these regional offices.
The program manages to cover a wide and challenging geographic territory., The organization makes the most of its available resources., The program has excellent staff who are alligned with the vision and goals of the organization., These services fill a high priority community need, not filled by any other resource in the area., There is an excellent coordination of FVP with other community services.
There are no program weanesses apparent, but there are long term challenges to providing services as discused above.
Barbara Covey agrees that this program aligns with Health, as indicated on the application.
This program has requested $20,000.
Barbara Covey’s Recommendation: Definitely Fund for $20,000
Recommendations and Comments
Definitely Fund = No question, UWMM should fund this program.
Maybe Fund = I think UWMM should fund this program, but I have outstanding questions.
Maybe Don’t Fund = I don’t think UWMM should fund this program, because I have outstanding concerns.
Don’t Fund = UWMM should not fund this program.
Rachel GrantDefinitely Fund
Leon Duff/Ann LindemanDefinitely Fund
Rick DorianDefinitely Fund
This is a vital community need.
Michelle CesareDefinitely Fund
Cheryl flewellingDefinitely Fund
Robert DahlgrenDefinitely Fund
Fills gaps in services, and covers entire UWMM service area. Recommend funding for full amount.
Jackie DaltonDefinitely Fund
George ColemanDefinitely Fund
Susan RoyDefinitely Fund