June 22nd, 2024

Victim services looking for volunteers

By Tim Kalinowski on September 23, 2021.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDtkalinowski@lethbridgeherald.com

The Lethbridge Police Victim/ Witness Services Unit is looking for more compassionate volunteers to join their team to help those at their most vulnerable.
“We were one of the first Victim Services in the province,” says Program Manager Catherine Pooley, “and after 30 years we have built a remarkable team. You are really joining not just a volunteer opportunity, but a network and a team that supports each other and works forward to look after the community as well.”
Pooley says the Victim/Witness Services Unit tries to recruit new members once a year, but acknowledges not everyone is cut out to deal with the trauma the unit faces on a daily basis.
“There is a right crowd out there for it, for sure,” she states. “We have often had students from the psychology programs, students from the criminal justice program. Some folks who are really just interested in giving back to their community and have an empathetic ear, and are ready to share some of that compassion with the people in our community. It is not easy work, but we do a lot of training to make sure they are skilled and they are ready.”
Those whom the unit helps need all the support they can get at what is often their worst moments, says Pooley.
“We try to work with people during the entire process of the criminal justice system that they are involved in,” she says. “So from the time of an acute emergency, we are there to be able to support them, help them regain that sense of balance, and find how to sort of take their next steps. From there, we make sure they have access to the appropriate community resources. That we will be able to support them in the best way possible.”
For more information on the time commitment involved, and all other questions, contact Pooley at catherine.pooley@lethbridgepolice.ca or call 403-330-5023.
Those wanting to fill out an application form should visit the LPS website at http://www.lethbridgepolice.ca/victim-services. The deadline for applications is Oct. 15.

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