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Office on Violence Against Women Campus Grant

In October 2020, the Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women awarded University of Sioux Falls a $300,000 campus grant to further the university’s gender-based violence prevention, intervention and response efforts. In February of 2021, University of Sioux Falls hired Rachel Martens as the Project Director to run and oversee the grant initiatives. She has a background in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, completed her counseling internship at The Compass Center, worked at Avera Behavioral Health for three years, and has been a part of social justice initiatives abroad. Along with Martens, the grant is facilitated by the Coordinated Community Response Team (CCRT). This team consists of both on and off campus partners. The OVW grant provides essential resources and support for collaborative, sustainable change. 

Coordinated Community Response Team

University of Sioux Falls Coordinated Community Response Team (CCRT) is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative team consisting of campus and community partners. The CCRT works with the campus community on furthering a culture where gender-based violence will not be tolerated. Through inclusive, culturally-competent, trauma-focused education, awareness, support, safety and prevention, the CCRT functions together to reduce Sexual Assault, Dating Violence, Domestic Violence and Stalking on campus. 

University of Sioux Fall’s Coordinated Community Response Team (CCRT) collectively oversees the planning, implementation, and evaluation of the university’s OVW grant initiatives with the support and guidance of the OVW Grant Director. The CCRT divides it work into five main areas of focus:

  • Coordinated Community Response Team 
  • Comprehensive Prevention
  • Student Conduct
  • Law Enforcement/Campus Safety
  • Victim/Survivor Services

Currently, University of Sioux Fall’s CCRT includes representatives from the following departments and community organizations: Student Life & Housing, Human Resources, Title IX, Student Conduct, Risk Management, Campus Counseling Services, Campus Ministry Partners, Campus Safety and Security, Marketing and Communications, The Compass Center, Avera Behavioral Health, Sioux Falls Police Department, South Dakota States Attorney’s Office.

CCRT Values

All members are an integral part of creating change and shifting of both campus and community cultures. The CCRT holds itself and its initiatives accountable to the values of diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility. The CCRT values creating initiatives, programming, education and policies that empower all members of our USF community and gives them ample opportunities to see themselves and have real voice and power. 

Education & Prevention

We value educating our students through preventative strategies that will equip them with the tools needed to help create a safer campus community. We value education for students, Faculty/Staff through training, bystander intervention and outreach to our greater community.

Trauma Informed Support

We value our local partnership with the greater Sioux Falls community regarding trauma informed training and care. Through this training and support, the USF community will increase access to services and better responsiveness to victim/survivor support, both on campus and in the Sioux Falls community.

Accountability

As members of the USF community, we value that all citizens are held accountable for their actions. Through the handbooks, policies, and procedures outlined, all members will know what is expected of them to create a safe, empowering and engaging environment. 

Inclusivity & Participation

We value diversity and are committed to treating all people with respect and honor. We value and recognize the contribution of all members of our unique campus and community. We value and support a culture of teamwork and collaboration.

Welfare

We are dedicated to action and decisions that express and achieve our value of safety and wellbeing for all in a way that honors the individual’s identity, culture and beliefs.

For more information or to become involved in OVW grant initiatives, please contact:

Rachel Martens, M.S. CHRD, NCC
OVW Grant Project Director
Rachel.Martens@usiouxfalls.edu 
605.331.6596

Or

Andrew Porteous, M.A.
OVW Grant Project Supervisor 
Director of Student Life and Housing
Andrew.Porteous@usiouxfalls.edu 
605.331.6892