Friday, January 6, 2017

• What is TIP?

Are you familiar with TIP?

It stands for Trauma Intervention Program. 

The local chapter (Southwest Riverside County) has been around for 24 years. It stretches from the unincorporated areas just south of Corona down through Temecula, west to La Cresta and east to the unincorporated areas near Hemet and places like Aguanga and Anza.

I first heard of this organization back at Wildomar's Resource Summit from last Summer. 
I had them on my short list of blogabilities (gotta love that portmanteau I just came up with), but kept putting it off. 
At the December city council meeting Magda Stewart of TIP, at the microphone, was part of a presentation and the blog idea came back to the front of the line. Link to blog.

They're there to provide a caring presence and practical support.

Trauma Intervention Program Inc. (TIP), a national non-profit organization, was founded in 1985. 

TIP has 16 affiliates serving over 250 cities across the nation. Each affiliate, citizen volunteers respond to traumatic incidents at the request of Police, Fire and Hospital personnel to support those who are emotionally traumatized. 

I chatted with Magda Stewart, who runs this local chapter of the nonprofit organization, and asked her for an overview of TIP.

"We are a group of volunteers who respond at the request of first responders. We're called out by fire, police, emergency room nurses and doctors, highway patrol, [in extraordinary cases] we may be called in by schools. What we do is provide emotional and practical support to the survivors." 

They would like to eventually get a mental health professional on their roster to help from time to time.
TIP is a group of specially trained volunteers who provide emotional aid and practical support to victims of traumatic events and their families in the first few hours following a tragedy.

The scenes they go out on are traumatic, hence the T in their name; unexpected incidences.

It can include people dying at home, suicide, a traffic collision, infant death, overdose. There are times that they go out on calls that don't involve a death, but the majority of their calls do involve a death.
What TIP volunteers do:

• Provide emotional comfort and support
• Help arrange for shelter, clothing, food,and transportation
• Assist police officers with death notifications
• Serve as liaisons between the survivors and the emergency personnel
• Provide information and referrals to appropriate agencies for ongoing support
• Serve as temporary protectors for vulnerable survivors

They have a resource guide, a 35 page booklet, that they give to the people that they help. 

It includes such information as "how to tell children about a loved one's death." It also includes lists of support groups, such as grief counseling.

The organization is in its 32nd year and the local chapter is in its 24th. They currently have about 21 volunteers on the roster, but they'd love to increase that to between 40 and 50.

With more members they will be able to get involved in more programs. One is called NODA (No One Dies Alone). NODA volunteers go to be with a person that is near death that has no family. There are a lot of veterans that need this service. 

Each TIP volunteer is asked to sign up for three 12 hour shifts per month.

They've been averaging about 37 to 40 calls a month.

TIP Volunteers are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.  

They are called by police officers, firefighters, paramedics, and hospital personnel to assist family members and friends following a natural or unexpected death; victims of violent crime including rape, assault, robbery, or burglary; victims of fire; disoriented or lonely elderly persons; people involved in motor vehicle accidents; people who are distraught and seeking immediate support; and survivors of suicide.

There is a class starting on January 19th. 

It lasts 55 hours over several days. There is a $50 fee for the classes, which I think helps chase away people that aren't serious about it. 

On the bright side... the fifty dollar fee is tax deductible. The fees cover the class materials, which includes a large binder of material.

The classes are small, about 10-12 people, though they'd love to have 20 volunteers per class.

Magda related that, "It's a pretty intense training... but you don't need any prior training... just empathy."

She went on to say, "The first half of our training is a screening process. We train on emotional first aid, and while the training is happening, the trainers are screening the potential volunteers."

An image from the TIP brochure I was given.

When someone suffers a traumatic event, a lot of times when they're on scene and see the first responders are not paying attention to them —they're busy. If someone's had a heart attack, they're busy trying to tend to that person. 

If family members want information [first responders] are too busy at times to really deal with that at the moment. 

So what happens is, those family members or friends suffer what we call a secondary injury. Which is their perception of how the emergency system treated them. 

We are there to prevent that secondary injury

Magda Stewart, TIP SWRC

If the January class is too soon for you, but you'd still like to be part of TIP, they'll be having another class in June. They like to have two classes a year.

TIP SWRC is also looking for someone that might be looking for an internship, where they can help update their website. 

For more information you can call
(951) 698-2453
or email
•          •          •

The problem is we try to ride two horses at the same time. One is the plodding steed of practicality, the other is the fiery stallion of our imagination. So we are constantly torn between reality and illusion.
– E.G. Marshall, 1914-1998

Wildomar Rap reminds you that a fiery stallion of imagination in the hand, is better than two nags of tedium in the bush.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Let's hear what you have to say... for other inquiries try the email listed under "view my complete profile" but if you want to discuss a blog topic, I'll only do it in this comment section, not by email.

Subscribe by Email