A new Victim Support Service has been launched at the University of Plymouth – run by students for students in need.
The confidential weekly drop-in service was launched on 30 January and takes place during semester time, every Wednesday 2–7pm, in Cookworthy 414.
The service is being run by Criminology students who have been fully trained and accredited as Victim Support volunteers, and welcomes students who require emotional and practical support in the aftermath of crime.
Victim Support (VS) has a long history of aiding victims of a range of crimes; by offering this type of help, as well as signposting users to other agencies where appropriate.
The new on-campus service is an exciting addition to the work that Victim Support carries out in the wider community, and the students running it have worked hard to get the project off of the ground.
Heather Welch, Victim Support Manager, has worked with the students over the past six months to prepare for the launch. She said:
“This is an exciting project for VS which will provide an opportunity for students who have experienced crime to seek confidential help on campus. The project will be able to provide initial support as well as a referral into VS or other services for longer term help. It will also develop the skills of the students providing the support so it is an all-round winner.”
Dr Dan Gilling, Head of School for Law, Criminology and Government, has encouraged and supported the provision of a bespoke ‘on campus’ training package, delivered by Victim Support to Criminology students. He said:
“I'm delighted that this partnership endeavour between the University of Plymouth and Victim Support is now being launched. Supporting those in need and making a difference goes to the heart of our ethos in the School of Law, Criminology and Government, and this is going to be of great benefit to our Criminology students, to students at the University, and indeed to the wider community.”