First Step Project Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault


Page last updated May 2024

Consistent or Direct-Service Volunteers are volunteers who are housed in recurring placements and/or have ongoing, direct contact and engagement with First Step clients are required to complete Core Skills Training. Some non-direct placements may be required to attend as well. All volunteers are always welcome to attend!

You must PRE-REGISTER and be pre-approved. Other screening procedures are also expected before you commit (attend an info session, meet with staff, complete an application, etc.). Spots are limited.

Core Skills Training is NOT training for your volunteer placement. It is training to help better understand First Step, Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault and how to work alongside survivors of violence.

First Step will provide you with the foundational training you will need to be successful. Completion of the ENTIRE Core Skills Training series is required in order to ongoingly engage in direct service volunteering opportunities (nurturing, crisis response, front desk, etc.). It is also a great way to meet staff and learn more about First Step and domestic and sexual violence! The skills and information we share has been described as life changing for people in their daily life, as well as volunteering at First Step.

Core Skills Training is of the highest qualifications a volunteer can receive at First Step. Having completed the training will be very helpful for future engagement with the agency and survivors. 

Dates will be provided as they are made available, but are typically held in January, May, and September over 4 segments; one evening 5:30-8:30p and 3 consecutive, full days (Friday, Saturday & Sunday), 9a to 5p at First Step's Wayne office (4400 Venoy Rd.). Currently, the next Core Skills Training series are scheduled as follows:

Attendance of ALL Core Skills Training sessions listed within a series is mandatory. 

Fall Session
September 2024
September 5th, 5:30p-8:30p
September 13th, 9a-5p
September 14th, 9a-5p
September 15th, 9a-5p

Winter Session
January 2025 (tentative date subject to change)
January 16th, 5:30p-8:30p
January 24th, 9a-5p
January 25th, 9a-5p
January 26th, 9a-5p

Spring Session
May 2025 (tentative date subject to change)
May 8th, 5:30p-8:30p
May 16th, 9a-5p
May 17th, 9a-5p
May 18th, 9a-5p

Core Skills Training Topics Include:

  • First Step History and Programs
  • Diversity, & Inclusion
  • Vicarious Trauma & Trauma Stewardship
  • Dynamics of Intimate Partner Violence (IPV)
  • Dynamics of Sexual Assault (SA)
  • Children & Violence
  • Safety Planning & Lethality
  • Survivors & the Legal System
  • Empathy, Advocacy, & Crisis Intervention

Specialized Training

Additional training is offered for each placement within their respective program. Volunteers often are assigned a staff liaison, so serves as the staff onsite who helps the volunteer identify training needs, schedule, confirms hours, and oversees project and task delegation.