Secondary Victim Services
A Secondary Victim is someone who has been impacted by another person’s victimization.
Secondary Victims are often comprised of family members and/or loved ones. When a traumatic event happens to one member of the family, most, if not all, of the family members are traumatized in their own right. Their traumatic reactions can be similar, but are often not expressed the same as the primary victims, which can cause more stress to the family system as families often feel confused and unsure about their own individual feelings.
Secondary Victim services are VITAL. The primary victim needs support to heal from their experience. Often times, the secondary victim is a part of the primary victim’s support system. In order for the primary victim to heal, the support system will need to heal as well.
At Prevail, we strive to provide equal supportive services to both primary and secondary victims of crime and abuse. Secondary victims can meet individually with an advocate as well as attend one of the Parenting Support Groups offered (if applicable). Secondary Victims also have access to all other Prevail services, including, but not limited to: court advocacy, protective order assistance, information and referrals, victim notification, and self-sufficiency services (employment, financial literacy, and housing).
Prevail offers services FREE OF CHARGE to victims and their families. Contact us today for more information.
Advocates at Prevail can also respond to the hospital if an individual has experienced physical or sexual abuse which includes injury. Sometimes this might mean that the individual will have a Sexual Assault Nurse Exam. Advocates at Prevail are trained to understand the steps of this exam and want to help the individual to understand the process. Additionally, advocates can provide emotional support, safety planning, and connections to community resources to help individuals and families experiencing this crisis.
When an individual comes to Prevail, they have the opportunity to create goals for what they want to change in their life. Sometimes goals are physical needs - including housing or employment. Other goals are emotional, such as learning how to manage feelings about the abuse or improving communication between family members. Prevail’s Adult Advocates seek to support each individual in achieving their goals.
A primary goal of Prevail’s services is to increase safety for individual seeking services. This includes physical, emotional, and technology safety. Creating a specific safety plan with each individual is a priority at Prevail. After creating a safety plan, advocates will continue to converse with clients to try to continue to increase and/or maintain safety. Safety plans can include what to do during an incident, how to properly document ongoing incidents of concern, identification of support people, individual rights, protective order information, coping mechanisms to use to calm down in a stressful environment, and more.