By, Tiffany Stickney
Founded in 2003 by a group of local concerned citizens, the Winnemucca Domestic Violence Services (WDVS) organization has continued to expand and become a proven successful non-profit program benefitting Humboldt and the surrounding counties. On call advocates are available 24/7 to help get an abuse victim to a safe environment, apply for a protection order or transport sexual assault victims to Reno for an exam. WDVS does not stop there, recovery and re-establishing a future are just as important as crisis intervention. Staff works one on one with participants to discuss the available options through WDVS, other local resources, state and federal programs. Options are presented to them on housing, education, mental health treatments, finances, job opportunities and care for their children. It is our staff’s goal to inspire feelings of safety and strength within our participants when their world has been turned upside down. A success for us is when a participant sees themselves as a survivor and feels empowered and confident in their decisions and the steps before them look attainable and joyful.
WDVS receives funds from the State of Nevada, Department of Child and Family Services, the Attorney General’s Office and the Nevada Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Violence. In addition, WDVS is financially supported by local Corporations and their employees such as Newmont, NV Energy and Barrick as well as local organizations such as Nevada Muley’s, Bengoa Eye Center, Bella Grazia, Scrap DV and several supportive individuals within our County. Approximately one third of our budget is secured through local support. This shows commitment and passion within our community and sustainability within WDVS. These funds are used to provide emergency housing, short-term housing, deposits on permanent housing, individual counseling, food, gas, child care and relocation costs. Furthermore, these funds assist with expenses incurred when securing ID’s and legal documents that have been destroyed or lost during the abuse but are necessary to secure employment or insurance benefits.
WDVS staff is dedicated and steadfast to its mission and goals. The organization has received several awards lately including the “Open Heart Award” from the Alliance for Victims’ Rights, as well as Senatorial Recognition and Congressional Recognition for “Outstanding Agency”. Within the last year, WDVS has been the only agency to receive a perfect score from the state on its Audit and Financial Reviews in Nevada. WDVS also continues to be an organization chosen to implement different pilot programs initiated by the state and national institutes. We do this to ensure that our participants are receiving the most current and comprehensive services available to them. Our directors often times will assist other programs in streamlining their policies and procedures and offering advice and encouragement in their development. WDVS is proud of its staff, volunteers and the members of the Board who support them.