The Domestic Violence and Mental Health Policy Initiative (DVMHPI), directed by Carole Warshaw, MD, is a collaborative effort to build the capacity of Chicago-area service systems to provide affordable, high quality, trauma-informed services that address the mental health impact of domestic violence and lifetime abuse on domestic violence survivors and their children.
Since its inception in the fall of 1999, DVMHPI has engaged over 70 mental health, domestic violence, substance abuse, and social service agencies in the Chicago area to improve the quality, availability, and accessibility of services for the target population. DVMHPI and its local partner agencies have established common goals and principles for collaborative intervention, assessed current needs and resources for providing an optimal response to our target population, identified institutional and system barriers that impede both practice and access to care, initiated ongoing inter-agency partnerships for referral and consultation, and begun developing integrated service delivery models to ensure a comprehensive response to the traumatic experiences of domestic violence and childhood abuse.
Through the establishment of the National Center on Domestic Violence, Trauma, and Mental Health (NCDVTMH) in 2005, Dr. Warshaw and her team are expanding this model from Chicago to other cities nationwide, striving to bridge the philosophical and service delivery gaps separating the domestic violence, mental health, substance abuse and social service systems.
Hektoen administers grants awarded to DVMHPI and NCDVTMH, including awards from the HHS Administration on Children, Youth and Families (ACYF); Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women; and several local foundations.