Give an Hour Provides Help, Hope to Route 91 Harvest Festival Survivors
VENTURA COUNTY, Calif. – (Sept. 28, 2022) – Five years later, Give an Hour® is still supporting Southern California survivors and families of the 2017 Route 91 Harvest Festival mass shooting in Las Vegas by attending 5-year Remembrance activities Friday, Sept. 30 through Sunday, Oct. 2 in Las Vegas.
Over the past five years, Give an Hour’s Route 91 Heals team has provided support in a variety of ways – most notably with its peer support program, which gives survivors the opportunity to help their own. Peer supporters are individuals who lived through the same experience as those they are helping and their role is to offer support focused on advocacy, education, mentoring and motivation.
“Peer support shows you how to advance your own healing,” said Molly Maurer, survivor of both the Route 91 Harvest Festival and Borderline mass shootings, and peer support lead and program coordinator for Give an Hour. “It allowed me to listen to myself more and anticipate things so I could learn to help myself, which, in turn, gave me the opportunity to help others.”
Each peer supporter receives approximately 20 hours of coaching and training with courses that include motivational interviewing techniques, trauma-informed peer support, active listening skills, coping mechanisms and suicide awareness and prevention. Peer supporters are not licensed mental health providers.
“Peer support is a very powerful form of healing and offers a personal perspective that you won’t receive in traditional therapy,” said Trina Clayeux, Ph.D., CEO of Give an Hour. “After a tragedy, there are many immediate needs but our Route 91 Heals team is still going strong five years later and this is just a small piece of what we can offer survivors of mass violence here and elsewhere.”
The Route 91 Heals team offers a variety of options to meet the needs of survivors and families who are in varying stages of their healing journey. Survivor support groups led by licensed practitioners meet online multiple times each week, virtual wellness and resiliency workshops are available and there is even one-on-one support. The team hosts other educational opportunities for survivors and their families, like Emotional Life Skills courses and webinars on self-care, grief and the holidays, book clubs and even recreational gatherings focused on community-building activities.
“The Give an Hour peer support program filled a great need for the survivors and families in Southern California,” said Tennille Pereira, director of the Vegas Strong Resiliency Center. “The geographical uniqueness of this particular tragedy presented a challenge and they were more than up to the task.”
The Route 91 Heals program is funded by the Ventura County District Attorney’s Office and also works in partnership with the Vegas Strong Resiliency Center, the California Victim Compensation Board and the Family Justice Center of Ventura County.
About Give an Hour
Founded in 2005, Give an Hour® is a nonprofit organization dedicated to transforming mental health by building strong and healthy individuals and communities. We provide no-cost counseling through a network of volunteer mental health professionals and empower community through collaborative programs, peer support and educational opportunities that benefit both clients and providers. Our efforts focus on people impacted by military service, mass violence, the opioid epidemic, and interpersonal violence. For more information, visit: giveanhour.org.