Part of the process of moving involves acclimating to one’s new environs. Yours truly is having zero difficulty with that in most regards. I am once again walking most places – to the grocery store, to the gym, to the coffee shop – and using public transportation at all opportunities when prudent to do so. When neighbors pass me with their pooches, I make a concerted effort to stop, pet them and learn their names. And like a good new member of the community, I am trying to take part in its goings on. I visit the weekly farmer’s market and stop by the various festivals in the nearby park. This past weekend, I attended my first football game at the local university. I walked there in the humidity and the rain, determined to join in the revelry no matter how soggy; it was fantastic.
Through all of this though, I am ever mindful that I need to keep momentum on my training as a victim advocate and crisis counselor. I’ve reached out to one of the women’s resource centers in town. But it’s been a bit murky in figuring out how Georgia works and if my certification from Connecticut is somehow transferable. Those 40 hours took a lot out of me last fall with my work and travel schedule. After hitting a few dead ends, I sent out an SOS on the CounterQuo.org listserv for info about how/if Georgia certifies rape crisis counselors and where. I was again reminded of the power of numbers and networking. What a tremendous group of people in the CounterQuo group! My note was answered almost immediately by some of the finest, most knowledgeable people in the field. And in no time, I was connected with the head of a county agency in the state.
I am right now figuring out how to fit in 29 hours of training to be certified. And I am reading up on – thanks to my new contact – the pathetic funding that sexual assault centers receive in the state. I am mildly surprised as I recall Georgia being one of the first states to have its judicial language revised to reflect neutral language regarding victims and the various crimes of sexual assault. And while it’s depressing as all get out, it also provides an opportunity for me to dig in. Not sure what that looks like yet. In the meantime, I am prepping notes for talks with some local sports teams, and researching additional training opps and modules. No, I don’t really have a lot of extra time, but it’s important stuff for sure. I will gladly make the time.
So though it would seem so much has changed – and so much has! – much has stayed the same, but in a good way. I just wanted to let you all know that. I’m still in the fight; I’m just a little farther south than I used to be. 🙂