The Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities (TCDD) issued a Request for Applications (RFA) for Sexual Assault Response and Prevention projects (RFA 2020-09). Through these grants, organizations will develop projects that will help reduce the number of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) who are victims of sexual assault. The deadline to apply is June 15, 2020.
Due to various factors, many people with disabilities may be at risk to be victims of sexual assault. The data illustrates this, as various subcategories within the disability community are shown to be much more likely to experience sexual assault than groups of people without disabilities. People with disabilities often lack access to the appropriate resources and supports when they experience sexual assault, and some victims may not even identify what they experience as being illegal or wrong. Also, victims fear the consequences they could experience if they do report an assault, whether it’s losing services already in place or facing retribution from the perpetrator.
About the RFA
The Sexual Assault Prevention and Response projects will develop and implement – or demonstrate – promising practices that will reduce the number of Texans with IDD who are victims of sexual assault. Projects will work to increase the number of people who understand and can identify instances of sexual assault, as well as know how to report the crimes. Also, projects will develop strategies to ensure survivors have access to the appropriate formal and informal supports and services.
Projects will develop and/or implement best practices to educate and support victims. A program may include evidence-informed educational materials and trainings or other educational events conducted in-person or online. Target audiences should include people with IDD, their families, friends, and allies. Individuals that participate in the project will be surveyed to measure the effectiveness of the trainings and materials.
Projects will also work to distribute information and raise awareness with community stakeholders about issues related to sexual assault and people with IDD. These efforts will be in addition to – not in place of – material development and trainings.
Below are just a few examples of the types of topics projects would address.
- The conditions that may increase the likelihood of sexual offense occurring;
- signs, such as behavior changes, that might indicate there has been a sexual offense committed;
- how families, friends, and allies may support an individual with IDD in a trauma-informed manner; and/or
- an individual’s rights as they relate to reporting sexual offense and how they may do so.
Projects may also include strategies to implement best practices to support victims through assessment and examination, or models to better access formal and informal supports and services. Projects may also include best practice models that include peer support.
Projects must ensure that people who are traditionally unserved or underserved are included, especially groups that have been shown to be at higher risk and/or victimized at a higher rate than others. The grantee will also provide TCDD with information and recommendations that can be used to develop further policy actions and future projects.
Applications will be evaluated on both:
- the expected quality of the materials and education, and
- the demonstrated ability to effectively educate and train the most individuals.
The funding amount for this RFA is $150,000 per year for up to five years. Funding is available for up to five projects.