LACASA Center recently completed an 18-month training program designed to strengthen how advocacy agencies engage with survivors, address institutional responses to violence against women, and involve the community in ending violence.

Our agency was selected by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women to participate in the national Advocacy Learning Center (ALC) program.

LACASA’s team consisted of Chief Operating Officer, Polly Mallory, Program Director, Elizabeth Stahl, and Children’s Counselor, Ashley Hughes. Team members traveled to national training events and participated in numerous distance learning activities. The team provided LACASA staff members with ALC educational sessions throughout the 18-month program.

Praxis International offers the Advocacy Learning Center training in partnership with the Office on Violence Against Women. LACASA Center was selected as one of only 15 agencies admitted into the 2018-2019 program. The nonprofit organization now joins 265 national agencies that have participated in the ALC.

“In order to serve our clients and our community, it is critical that we provide our staff with ongoing educational training,” said President and CEO of LACASA Bobette Schrandt. “This places our professionals at the forefront of emerging research on trauma, and how it affects victims and survivors.

“The intensive ALC training guided us on assessing our roles as victim advocates and helped us review our internal procedures. It also provided an advocacy blueprint, which enabled us to work with local law enforcement, legal, and social service agencies to coordinate how we—as a community system—respond to victims in crisis,” Schrandt said.

LACASA Center offers more than 30 programs to Livingston County residents which assist victims, survivors and their families with the aftermath of child abuse, domestic violence and sexual assault. Along with responsive programs, LACASA also provides community-wide educational programs to raise awareness about abuse and help prevent it.

The Centers for Disease Control reports that one in five women will be sexually assaulted in her lifetime and one in three women will be a victim of domestic violence. The programs participating in the ALC are working to end sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, prostitution, and human trafficking.