Violence Free Colorado is comprised of a diverse network of domestic violence organizations, community partners, and allied individuals across the state. Although most people associate Colorado with breathtaking mountains, world-class ski resorts (Rocky Mountain high), and the city of Denver, with its unique airport and well-known football team, the majority of the state is rural.
The eighth largest state in the U.S., Colorado is a rural state of divergent geography, populations, economics, and lifestyles that encompass the hustle, bustle, and progressive nature of Colorado’s front-range communities as well as the quieter, slower pace of frontier and agricultural rural communities. 82% percent of Colorado’s people reside in the Front Range region, or urban corridor, leaving the remaining 1,137,517 people scattered throughout the state’s non-urban regions: 20.9% of whom identify as Hispanic or Latino. 73% of Colorado’s 64 counties are rural (24) and/or frontier (23) which has a population density designation of six or fewer people per square mile.
As a statewide coalition, Violence Free Colorado is deeply committed to serving the entire state and greatly values and prioritizes rural inclusion. Violence Free Colorado staff includes individuals from, or still living in, rural areas and all Violence Free Colorado Rural Project staff reside in rural areas.
Coordinated Community Response Teams (2014-2016)
FINAL PROJECT REPORT available soon.
The CCR project originated from a needs assessment completed by Violence Free Colorado’s rural program members. It identified the need for CCRTs and cited the lack of training and time needed to coordinate an effective team as barriers. It further identified that assistance in developing or strengthening a CCRT had to come from within the community itself, as “outsiders” were not effective with rural communities.
In response, Violence Free Colorado structured its project to provide funding for 4, part-time CCRT coordinators (one for each project site), housed with the Violence Free Colorado member program, who lived in the community itself, for the specific purpose of coordinating the CCRT. Additionally, Violence Free Colorado hired a Statewide CCR Project Manager, also rural, to provide support, technical assistance, and training to the coordinators and to the community as needed.
Project Sites were selected through an application process by a statewide multi-disciplinary team. The sites selected include 2 mountain communities and 2 agricultural communities, one in southern Colorado and one on the western slope.
Project Sites are:
Response – Aspen Tu Casa, Inc. – Alamosa
Coordinator: Amy Throm Coordinator: Fonda Cox
Executive Director: Renee Carol-Grate Executive Director: Ryan Anderson
Advocate Safehouse Project – Glenwood Spgs Tri-County Resource Center – Delta
Coordinator: Sarah Buckley Coordinator: Chip Meneley
Executive Director: Julie Olson Executive Director: Kaye Hotsenpiller
Violence Free Colorado’s CCRT project is based on the Praxis, International’s Blueprint for Safety and Violence Free Colorado has been fortunate be a recipient of intensive technical assistance and training provided by Praxis, International who has conducted three site visits, traveling throughout the state to meet with the coordinators and their teams.
For information regarding the CCRT Project, contact Jacque Morse, Project Manager, at 303-962-0939 (direct line) or jmorse(at)violencefreeco.org.
Statewide Rural Latin@* Outreach Program (2014-2016)
FINAL PROJECT REPORT available soon.
Develop culturally-engaging outreach and strengthen domestic violence and sexual assault advocacy, and safety services to rural Colorado Latinas through:
- Rural Health Promotora** Model of Engagement program with four partner organizations in rural communities.
- Training for advocacy organizations on cultural sensitivity, cultural competence, and culturally relevant services.
- Need for culturally specific outreach and recruiting, hiring and retaining of diverse staff from Spanish speaking communities,
- Support in developing customized approaches to serving Spanish speaking survivors and communities and the specific social and cultural challenges inherent in that work.
- Program development and considerations around collective and individual needs of Latino communities whether multi-generational or recent arrivals from Latina America.
- Prevention, intervention, and responses outside the mainstream as relevant and valid
- Connections with relevant community partners
- Organizational addressing of intersecting issues/realities of Latin@ and immigrant survivors
For more information please contact Pat Tessmer, ptessmer(at)violencefreeco.org.
*The usage of ‘@’ “reflects our commitment to gender inclusion and recognizes the important contributions of both men and women” – Read more
**The Promotora model is a culturally sensitive, lay health educator for the Latina community. It has been used throughout the United States to address domestic violence, chronic disease, and oral health. At the core of the Promotoras program is the recruitment of Latino community members who because they live in the community and have shared experiences, possess an intimate understanding of the community’s social networks as well as its strengths and challenges. Because of these connections and knowledge, they are well placed to function as health navigators to work within their own Latino communities to assist Public Health.