CAPSEA Executive Director, Billie Jo, created a course to help human service professionals gain a better understanding of rural victims, including the challenges faced by rural victims of crime and strategies for providing services for these individuals.

According to the Center for Rural Pennsylvania, 48 of PA’s 67 counties are classified as rural. This course covers the challenges and strengths of rural communities, along with the implications of those challenges when providing effective services to rural crime victims. Strategies to ensure rural victims are able to have their safety and service needs met despite challenges stemming from living in a rural community.

Specific topics covered include:

  1. Understanding the rural culture, including the basic needs of rural victims and the strengths of these areas.
  2. The impact of a rural classification, including identifying services unavailable to these victims and the impact of that unavailability.
  3. The challenges facing rural victims when recovering from trauma due to crime.
  4. How to identify and acquire appropriate strategies and accessible support for rural victims of crime.

Special thanks to the PA Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD) for funding the training through a grant from the US Department of Justice, and to Penn State Harrisburg for producing the video.