6 tips for navigating your PD through the Violence against Women (OVW) grant programs

These programs do not change much during the course of an administration so you could begin to review the 2014 funding documents to guide your development of a project suitable for these grants

Since 1994 the Office on Violence against Women (OVW) has been offering funding, training, technical assistance and support for law enforcement in the development of policing strategies to reduce violence against women. The mission of the Office on Violence Against Women.

The mission of the OVW — a component of the U.S. Department of Justice — is to provide federal leadership in developing the nation’s capacity to reduce violence against women and administer justice for and strengthen services to victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking.

There are currently three formula-based grant programs and 18 discretionary grant programs. The formula-based (non-competitive) programs include STOP (Services, Training, Officers, and Prosecutors). The 18 discretionary programs are to fund programs which sup [port victims, and hold perpetrators accountable. Funding is provided to local, state and tribal governments, courts, non-profits organizations, community-based organizations, secondary schools, colleges and universities, and coalitions. All of these entities, including law enforcement partner together to develop more effective responses to violence against women.

6 Keys to Understanding OVW Grant Programs 
The 2015 budget request from the Department of Justice/Office on Violence Against Women $422 million for grants. This will support the programs described above. To review the programs awarded through this department you can download the List of OVW Grant Programs (PDF).

The discretionary funding related to law enforcement/government include:

1. Enhanced Training and Services to End Abuse in Later Life Program addresses elder abuse, neglect, and exploitation, including domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking, against victims who are 50 years of age or older through training and services. Eligible applicants include states and territories, Indian tribal governments and tribal organizations, units of local government, and nonprofit, nongovernmental victim services organizations with demonstrated experience in assisting elderly women or demonstrated experience in addressing sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.

2. Grants to Encourage Arrest Policies and Enforcement of Protection Orders Program encourages state, local, and tribal governments and state, local, and tribal courts to treat domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking as serious violations of criminal law requiring the coordinated involvement of the entire criminal justice system. Eligible applicants are states and territories, units of local government, Indian tribal governments, and state, local, tribal, and territorial courts.

3. Grants to Enhance Culturally Specific Services for Victims of Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking Program supports the development of innovative culturally specific strategies and projects to enhance access to services and resources for victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. Eligible applicants are community-based programs whose primary purpose is providing culturally specific services.

4. Grants for Outreach and Services to Underserved Populations supports the development and implementation of strategies targeted at adult or youth victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking in underserved populations, and victim services to meet the needs of such populations. Eligible applicants include nonprofit organizations that serve populations traditionally underserved due to geographic location, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, underserved racial and ethnic populations, and populations underserved because of special needs (such as language barriers, disabilities, alienage status, or age).

5. Grants to Reduce Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, and Stalking on Campus Program strengthens the response of institutions of higher education to the crimes of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence and stalking on campuses and enhances collaboration among campuses, local law enforcement, and victim advocacy organizations. Eligible applicants are institutions of higher education.

6. Training and Services to End Violence Against Women with Disabilities Grant Program establishes and strengthens multidisciplinary collaborative relationships and increases organizational capacity to provide accessible, safe, and effective services to individuals with disabilities and Deaf individuals who are victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. Eligible applicants are states, units of local governments, Indian tribal governments or tribal organizations, victim services providers, and nonprofit, nongovernmental organizations serving individuals with disabilities.

It is anticipated that this funding will be announced early on 2015 for awards in September 2015. The programs do not change much during the course of an administration so you could begin to review the 2014 funding documents to guide your development of a project suitable for these grants. This is a good time to begin to assess you community need and developing your policing strategies to address these issues. It is recommended that while you are researching this department you review the local resources map. Here you will find coalitions and partnerships, names and contact information of already involved in related programs, including state-wide coalitions.  Contact with the existing partners my offer you a fast track to discovering how your community sits into the state level plan for violence against women.

The home webpage also includes an Action Center to assist you in the creation of your grant application, including grant writing instructions, tips, samples, and guiding documents to understand the work of OVW. The OVW Grant program solicitation reference guide will walk you through your grant application.

Violence Against Women Network
In additional to the resources the federal government brings to the table for addressing Violence Against Women, there is also a nation online resource center. This center is the project of the National Resources Center on Domestic Violence. It contain thousands of resources and materials on violence against women. It also stores a grants and funding center for funding opportunities, fund development, proposal development and fiscal management within this type of programing. The funding database includes hundreds of listings of federal, state and private funding on this topic. 

There are grants for urban areas and rural areas, for college and university issues and violence against women with disabilities. This office offers funding to assist you to meet the needs in development of effective strategies to help reduce the violence against the women where you live and work.  

About the author

Denise is the founder and President of DSSchlegel and Associates LLC which provides grant writing training and support, community and organizational assessments, facilitation services, strategic planning, and curriculum development. She has more than 30 years of executive management experience in nonprofits, local government and law enforcement organizational supports. Denise has served as the law enforcement grant writing instructor for the Northeast Counter Drug Training center for the past 11 years. She is the author of “Grant Writing - Show Me the Money©”, the only CALEA certified grant writing course in the country.

Contact Denise Schlegel

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