How does the Trust get referrals?
All fatal collisions in Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire are referred directly to the Road Victims Trust by the police Forensic Collision Investigation Unit and contain details of those that have been affected – bereaved individuals and families, those involved in the collision and witnesses. We offer our service to all affected people unless they have indicated to the police that they do not want any contact from us.
We also take referrals from GPs and other agencies or self-referrals from people who contact us directly. If referrals are from outside our area we are sometimes able to offer telephone support. These referrals may include people affected by life changing injuries or trauma as a result of their involvement in a serious road collision.
Initial contact following a police or agency referral will be by letter or a telephone call from a Trust Coordinator who will aim to get an understanding of what is needed. The majority of support is offered as weekly, one hour session at the victim’s home, in our office or by telephone.
Who we support …
The Road Victims Trust (RVT) offers emotional and practical support to anyone who lives in Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire who is affected by a serious road collision. We can offer telephone support to people living outside the area.
How does the Trust support victims?
We provide information alongside emotional and practical support. If you have been affected by a road collision, the rollercoaster of emotions and complexities of what follows can leave you bewildered, distressed and in some cases feeling like you are going mad!
The legal procedures following a fatal road collision extend over a period of months or years and involve a police investigation and either an inquest or a criminal court case. Throughout the time of these procedures the Road Victims Trust will be able to keep you up to date with what is happening and explain what part you will have in these procedures.
Alongside the legal procedures each individual affected by a road death or life changing injury collision will have their own experience of a range of emotions that they would not experience in their usual everyday lives.
Feeling overwhelmed by grief or tormented by images from the collision are not everyday feelings.
Our emotional support is tailored to each person we work with. At the Road Victims Trust we have specialist bereavement and trauma training to inform our work with you and what you are experiencing. We have been supporting people affected by serious road collisions since 1995 and so have a wealth of knowledge on road death and road injury cases.
A free, confidential, weekly session of one hour provides the time and space to express how you are feeling and to make sense of what has happened. Regular weekly contact is helpful to contain the uncertainties of what lies ahead and helps limit the exhaustion that comes with the feelings experienced. While those you know may offer support, some people find they are less able to talk about what has happened for fear of upsetting family and friends.
You may need support to find ways of managing things you have not handled before, for example a funeral, benefits, notifying authorities of the collision. Coping with the feelings and everyday tasks can be enough at first so someone with a clear head and experience of what needs to be done can be invaluable.
We can offer the following:
- A highly trained individual who can support through this difficult time and the potentially confusing and distressing procedures and processes you will face
- Access to the information required to deal with the aftermath of a fatal road collision
- Support to make choices as to how to use that information
- Support at an inquest or criminal court
- A free and confidential service