The Victim Services Program helps residents of mesa county who are affected by traumatic events. It hopes to have this grant funding approved and sees it as a key to helping victims deal with what they've been through.
Tracy Baker heads the victim services program for the mesa county sheriff's department and explains how the program helps crime victims in Mesa County.
"What we do in the Victim Services Program is work with victims of crime and traumatic incidents. We're dispatched by law enforcement. So, deputies arrive at a scene first and determine whether or not there's a VRA crime, so the VRA crimes again are the ones that fall under the Victims Rights Act, crimes against persons. They are starting with murder, manslaughter, vehicular homicide, assault, harassment, if its domestic violence, child abuse, sex assault, those kinds of crimes against persons" said Baker.
Any residents of Mesa County who feel like they've been a victim and need someone to talk to can call the program for advice.
"The Victims Services department is listed in the phone book but they can also just call the front desk of the sheriffs department and they can get in touch with us. Also dispatch can get a hold of which ever volunteer advocate is on call at any given time. We're on call twenty-four seven" said Baker.
These volunteers are literally saving peoples lives, and one of the victims actually called Baker just before our interview to thank her.
"I just got off the phone with a victim who said that the advocate that she met with on Friday saved her life. Literally convinced her not to commit suicide because she was so distraught and so upset" explained Baker.
Baker said that the program is always looking for more volunteer advocates as well.
"We're always interested in reaching out to people who might be interested in volunteering for the program and again they can get to us through the front desk of the sheriff's department" said Baker.
This morning the board of county commissioners gave approval for the victim rights program to apply for their grant renewal of $69,000, which would be funded by the state of Colorado. That application will be going through in the next few days and will help to keep this life saving program here in Mesa County.