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Nonprofit Spotlight

Sexual assault and abuse would never be easy to experience for even the strongest person. Often victims have other circumstances contributing to the abuse. Overwhelming emotions can lead to isolation and severe depression when the victim has no money for counseling.Valley Sexual Abuse Center provides direct individual and group therapy to victims of sexual assault or abuse. Originally, VSAC was formed to treat adult women sexually abused as children. Services have been expanded to serve men and the older adolescent with family members being included in treatment as warranted. VSAC has been in existence since 1993, providing treatment to over 500 individuals at low or no cost. It has been under the auspices of Colorado West Counseling Services since 1994.Providers are therapists or clinicians in the community, as well as employees of Colorado West Counseling Services. These 20 counselors have been trained to address sexual abuse and post-traumatic stress disorder.Funding for this project has been primarily provided by the Victim Assistance Law Enforcement Board. These grant monies are managed by the 9th Judicial District Attorney’s Office. Funding has also come from a supplementary grant from the Aspen Valley Community Foundation, and those on probation for sexual assault or abuse have also contributed their fines to the program.Participants in VSAC services are asked to pay for services based on ability to pay, usually $15 or less per service. For more information about VSAC services, please contact Colorado West Counseling Services at 945-2583 and ask for client intake. Criteria for enrollment are that the abuse or assault has current negative impacts on personal functioning. Any questions or comments about VSAC services are welcomed.October is Mental Health Awareness Month. It is nice to know that during these times of budget cuts for mental health as well as all health care services, VSAC provides services to those who would not be able to afford counseling.Anonymous quotes from individuals who have received treatment from VSAC are the most powerful closing statements.”This counseling gave me confidence and made me feel good about myself when I didn’t think I ever would.””I’ve been more outgoing. I’ve been able to have healthy relationships, and my attitude towards life has greatly improved.”Kay Vasilakis’ article, “Nonprofit Spotlight,” appears every other Monday. For news tips, please call 984-2308 or e-mail vasilaki@rof.net.

Valley Sexual Abuse Center at a Glance-Contact number: 945-2583-Service provided by Colorado West Counseling Center-Approximately 20 clinicians/ therapists available to help from Parachute to Aspen


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