SART Teams Rock!

Over 300 professionals attended the 8th Annual SART Summit Multi-Disciplinary Conference held September 3–5, 2019, in San Diego at the Hyatt Regency Mission Bay. Community SART (Sexual Assault Response Teams) are considered the optimal approach for responding to survivors of sexual assault, as no single discipline can handle all aspects of the victim’s needs.

This year, 77 SAFE/SANE examiners, 65 prosecutors, 39 law enforcement officers, 92 advocates, 4 social workers, 3 mental health specialists, 8 criminalists, and 15 SART Coordinators attended. Presentations included:

  • Dr. Antonia Abbey, Wayne State University and Editor of Psychology of Violence, who spoke on Etiology of Men’s Sexual Aggression;
  • Dr. Jocelyn Roland, who presented Vicarious Trauma: Blueprint for Vicarious Trauma Informed Organizations;
  • a series of presentations on strangulation forensic medical exams for all disciplines and human trafficking; and
  • Kate Pieper, LMFT, on Resiliency for First Responders.  

A special highlight of the conference was the screening of Unstranger Danger, a very moving documentary film created by child sexual abuse Detective Jeff Udvarhelyi with the Edscondido Police Department.

Save the date for the 9th Annual SART Summit! September 8–10, 2020 at the Hyatt Mission Bay, San Diego. 

Detective Jeff Udvarhelyi and Detective Damian Jackson with the Escondido Police Department presenting at the 8th Annual SART Summit.

Use a New Step-by-Step Guide to Navigate the Vicarious Trauma Toolkit

Vicarious trauma is an occupational challenge for people working and volunteering to help victims of crime, due to their continuous exposure to victims of trauma and violence.

In 2017, OVC launched The Vicarious Trauma Toolkit (VTT) to help organizations strengthen their ability to address work-related exposure to trauma. Informed by research and lessons learned, OVC has announced the release of the VTT Blueprint for a Vicarious Trauma-Informed Organization. Created by and for the field, this step-by-step guide provides additional tools and technical assistance to help organizations begin the process of becoming more trauma-informed.

Access the new VTT component, Blueprint for a Vicarious Trauma-Informed Organization, to get started. The blueprint includes four steps to help guide you:

  1. Lay the foundation for success. Obtain buy-in from organizational leadership and designate staff to lead the effort.
  2. Assess current organizational capacity for addressing vicarious trauma. Conduct an organizational assessment using sample scoresheets. This step also features a sample report to help communicate your findings. 
  3. Determine priorities and develop an action plan. Learn how to identify priorities, communicate the action plan with staff, and monitor progress.
  4. Explore the VTT for resources to implement your action plan. Use the priorities and tasks in your action plan to help address the needs of your staff.

Excerpted from the U.S. Department of Justice Office for Victims of Crime website.

SART Toolkit

The SART Toolkit is a unique resource offered by the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC). NSVRC is funded by the Office on Victims of Crime (OVC) and has many resources. The Toolkit is an educational tool for multi-disciplinary agencies to develop and maintain a Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) in their community. The purpose of a SART Team is to implement a comprehensive, sensitive, coordinated system of intervention and care for sexual assault victims. The SART Toolkit provides technical assistance, latest information, upcoming events, and other resources. The SART Toolkit is written and constantly updated by SART team experts and organizations. To access SART Toolkit, go to and create your account by registering with the website. The SART Toolkit also provides an opportunity to interchange information among members using the website. You can submit your information to the same website after you are registered.