Personal Narrative: A Career As A Victims Advocate

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My career plan is almost like putting pieces of a puzzle together to make them fit. I served twenty years in the U.S. Navy as a Military Police Officer. Shortly before returning from serving abroad, my wife became robbery victim. After filing a police report to this horrific crime, she was referred to a Victims Advocate (VA). That afforded us the opportunity to experience what the City of Jacksonville (COJ) Victims Advocacy Program could do to help victims regain some normalcy in their lives. Upon my retirement, I have continued to work with the Federal Government until present. I started taking classes at Columbia College in 2011. Still unsure about what I wanted to pursue a degree in I decided to continue with Criminal Justice as it…show more content…
As a child, I would help senior citizens within my community by running miscellaneous errands or by just sitting and talking with them. As a Military Police Officer, I was taught to protect and serve the community. Thankfully, the Human Services will enable me to continue protecting, caring, and serving those in need of available resources and services. Although, I cannot narrow my occupational interest down to one, I have discovered that I have two areas of interest; Victim Advocacy and Social Work. Victims Advocate (VA) is a career field in which I feel I would gain great satisfaction in. In witnessing what they do first hand, I had no idea that certain services even existed to assist victims to get back on their feet after traumatic events. A VA will typically use available resources within the community to help those get past the grief, terror, and fear of being victimized. Being an advocate for a victim takes on higher level of caring, sympathy, and empathy. As stated by Stewart and Schwartz, “Advocates should be open and amenable, so as to take in new information about a topic for which they are advocating” (Stewart and Schwartz, p. 56,…show more content…
As a part of case management for each victim, they offer such serves as: assessments, application assistance/follow-ups with Florida Victim Compensation (FVC), court accompaniment/criminal justice support, on-scene homicide crisis intervention, and Victims' Rights advocacy. “These services are intended to help reduce the trauma associated with crime victimization and to facilitate crisis stabilization and recovery. All services are available to victims of crime and their significant others” (, 2015). There a couple of ways to become a VA, from formal training to Associates degree or higher in the areas of Criminal Justice, Psychology, or Human

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