Victims of crime who need a lift can now be transported by Heartland Victim Services with a new seven-passenger van sponsored by Stettler Dodge.
Stettler RCMP and Heartland Victim Services accepted the 2012 Dodge Grand Caravan from Stettler Dodge last Friday.
“It will be more comfortable for our advocates and victims,” said Pat Hamilton, the program co-ordinator.
Advocates have long used their private vehicles to transport victims to places as far away as Calgary and Edmonton, which often includes mothers with young children, car seats and suitcases, which have been difficult in smaller vehicles, she said.
Now the new van will provide that comfort for everyone.
“We leased a van like this last year to take people to a national parole board hearing and it’s very nice to drive,” Hamilton said.
“Everyone will be glad to have it.”
Victim services will also use the van for advocates training and other related calls.
Stettler Dodge showed its community spirit again in supplying the van.
“It’s our commitment to support programs and services in our community,” said Kelly Hicks, owner of Stettler Dodge. “We can do our part to help out.”
A passenger van brings local services up to standard as part of the global program.
“It’s fantastic to have access to a van,” said Sgt. Duncan Babchuk of Stettler RCMP.
“It’s standard that victim services units are self-sufficient. With a van, you can’t get a better utility.”
The Stettler van is expected to be “very useful for victims services to go to a scene, particularly at night and provide temporary comfort and shelter.”