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Tides of Change, SANE Community Collaborative Workgroup Announces U.S. Department of Justice Grant Funding Award to Support Sexual Assault Victims in Tillamook County

News, Women's Health

Tides of Change logoTides of Change and the SANE community collaborative workgroup, including Adventist Health Tillamook, proudly announce that the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice and Office of Victims of Crime (OVC) have awarded Tides of Change a 3-year grant totaling $500,000 to address the critical need for compassionate care of adolescent and adult sexual assault victims in Tillamook County. This grant, one of only six grants awarded nationwide, will create and expand access to sexual assault forensic exam services performed by certified sexual assault nurse examiners (SANEs) employed by Tides of Change. SANEs are part of a coordinated response to sexual assault and, therefore, often work closely with law enforcement officers, forensic lab staff, child protective services, prosecutors, sexual assault advocates and crisis programs in the area.

The grant application grew from the SANE community collaborative workgroup convened by Adventist Health Tillamook and Tides of Change to address a critical need for forensic evidence collection unavailable locally. Without these services in Tillamook County, under-reporting sexual abuse crimes contributes to a decreased ability to hold offenders accountable through the criminal justice system. Valerie Bundy, MA, LPC, NCC and Executive Director for Tides of Change, shares, “We’re very successful when our community partners can come together and address the lack of services in this county.” Bundy continues, “Through this grant, the ultimate desired outcomes are to achieve a consistent, supportive, trauma-informed partnership response to survivors of sexual assault that enhances the health and well-being of survivors, increases the level of accountability for sexual assault offenders, and increases the overall safety and well-being of the community as a whole.”

“This successful grant award was a direct result of the collaborative community partners who came together and worked with the Adventist Health Tillamook grant writer to bring much-needed funding to help Tillamook County address a critical need for SANE services,” shared Gina Seufert, Physician and Clinic Services Executive and Privacy Officer at Adventist Health Tillamook. Additional community partners include Tillamook City Police, the Tillamook County Sheriff’s Office, the District Attorney’s Office, the Victims Assistance Program, the Tillamook County Board of Commissioners, The Rinehart Clinic, Tillamook County Community Health Center and the Tillamook Family Counseling Center.