The Red Deer Victim Services Unit is hosting an information night for anyone interested in becoming a volunteer advocate.  

On Jan. 23, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. the victim services unit will give a presentation on what the organization does, what volunteering entails, and answering questions, at the Red Deer RCMP Detachment (4602 51 Ave). 

The unit is police-based and works with the Red Deer RCMP to provide support, information, and referrals to victims of crisis, trauma, or tragedy. 

Programs to support victims include court support, financial benefits, impact statements, restitution, and the new service dog, Argo. 

Victim services volunteer requirements include:  

  • Must be 18 years or older 

  • Current criminal record check 

  • Current vulnerable sector check 

  • Complete an RCMP security clearance  

Volunteers typically provide emotional support, information, and referrals to victims of a crime, and individuals impacted by a traumatic event, the victim services website said. 

Volunteers often make follow-up calls with victims to offer services and provide information and support such as helping victims complete forms, court preparation sessions, and sometimes assisting staff with administrative responsibilities.  

“In the past, we have had people commit to becoming advocates because they think it will be a fast-paced role working side-by-side with the police to assist victim(s) right after a crime,” the website said. “The reality is that although 90 per cent of our referrals come from the RCMP, most do not require immediate, in person response. Volunteer advocates provide most of their assistance to victims over the phone.” 

Visit the victim services website for more programming and volunteering information.