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The Institute on Violence, Abuse and Trauma (IVAT), under the direction of Dr. Bob Geffner, has received a one-year award from the California Office of Emergency Services for $170,000 to support the Child Advocacy Studies Trainings (CAST) program. IVAT has been designated as the Western Regional CAST Training Center by the Gundersen National Child Protection Training Center and is tasked with providing innovative, hands-on training to better prepare professionals to more comprehensively investigate and prosecute cases of child maltreatment and neglect, including children exposed to violence.

The CAST curriculum focuses on developing participants’ understanding of the numerous factors that lead to child maltreatment, neglect and of existing responses to incidents of child exposure to intimate partner violence in order to work more effectively within the systems and institutions that respond to these incidents. The program includes a mock house to provide a lifelike environment, simulations of professional experiences and hands-on practice for analyzing real world situations.  By applying the skills in a realistic setting, professionals are able to dramatically improve related skills and critical thinking.

The Institute on Violence, Abuse and Trauma (IVAT) is an international resource and training center at Alliant International University. IVAT''s mission is to improve the quality of life for individuals on local, national and international levels by sharing and disseminating vital information, assisting with direct professional services, program evaluation and consulting to promote violence-free living.

Congratulations to IVAT and Dr. Bob Geffner!

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