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Swedish Covenant Health Receives $950,000 DOJ Grant to Support Violence Prevention Program

by Bill Ligas | Mar 04, 2019

Violence Prevention Program DOJ Grant


Swedish Covenant Health has been chosen as one of eight organizations nationwide by the U.S. Department of Justice Office for Victims of Crime to receive a $950,000 grant. Over the next two years, funds will support the enhancement of hospital-based victim services in the Violence Prevention Program (VPP) to better identify survivors of domestic violence, human trafficking and sexual assault and connect them to health and support services to improve their physical, emotional and financial recovery.

“We are pleased to receive these significant additional resources to further support individuals in our community who are impacted by these forms of violence,” said Anthony Guaccio, President and CEO of Swedish Covenant Health. “We look forward to working with our partners and staff to expand the reach of our Violence Prevention Program over the next two years to serve more people in our community.”
The grant will help support survivors of domestic violence, human trafficking and sexual assault as well as the SCH Violence Prevention Program in the following ways:

  • Continue and enhance training for 1,000 clinicians in the areas of trauma informed care, domestic violence, human trafficking and sexual assault 
  • Provide trauma-informed medical, dental and mental health care for survivors of violence 
  • Creation of an on-call pool of Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANE) and equipment to strengthen evidence collection techniques 
  • On-site and after hours telehealth domestic violence advocacy through our partner, Apna Ghar
  • Deepen SCH’s connection with our current community partners:
    • Apna Ghar
    • Between Friends
    • KAN-WIN
    • Salvation Army STOP-IT
    • Lutheran Social Services of Illinois
    • Chicago Metropolitan Battered Women’s Network
    • Resilience (formerly RVA)
    • Chicago Police Department District 20
    • Cook County State’s Attorney’s Sexual Assault Multi-disciplinary Team
  • New community partnerships to provide housing and workforce development resources for survivors of abuse: 
    • Sarah’s Circle (housing options for single women)
    • YWCA Evanston (residential services for DV survivors)
    • HANA Center (workforce development)
    • Jane Addams Resource Corporation (job training and education)
  • Partnership with UIC to provide evaluation services 
  • Formation of a survivor-led advisory group.
“We believe we were a final contender for this highly competitive grant because we are the only community hospital in Chicago with the capacity and proven track record to implement a comprehensive survivor-centered program on the scale sought by the U.S. Department of Justice and Office for Victims of Crime,” said Jennifer Tscherney, Executive Director of SCH Foundation which provides funding for the VPP at SCH. “We are very thankful for this support which will have a significant impact right here in our community.”

“At SCH we know that survivors of these forms of violence are often hesitant to seek medical and mental health care for fear that they will not be understood,” said Kate Lawler, Director of the SCH Violence Prevention Program.  “We are building this program on the wisdom of survivors who know best how a health care system can make them feel welcome, safe and supported.”

To learn more about the SCH Violence Prevention Program, contact Abidemi Abioye at 773-878-8200 ext. 5918.