|CARE 7 has formed a partnership with the Arizona State University School of Social Work to provide an internship opportunity for students seeking experience in crisis intervention and community resources.
Site description and client population: The City of Tempe’s CARE 7 Program is a unique program that responds when a behavioral health emergency requires immediate intervention. The mobile team, which operates twenty-four hours per day, seven days per week, is dispatched to crisis calls through the Tempe Police and/or Fire Department. The team consists of a staff person and either a student intern or a community volunteer. The unit is supervised by Tempe Community Services mental health professionals. Call types include death notification, domestic violence, sexual assault, suicides, chemically dependent, family fights, and homicides. All scenes are secured by police and/or fire personnel. Participation in the team effort would give the intern true knowledge of mental health emergency service needs in the City of Tempe. Referrals are made for elderly care, shelter, food, transportation, or whatever the situation requires. Interns complete a 36 hour Crisis Intervention Training Program in addition regular continuing education provided by professionals in the community. This internship focuses on crisis intervention, debriefing with the professional team and following the client until the crisis is resolved. This is not an opportunity for long-term therapy although there may be intense involvement with clients for a short duration.
Requirements of the site: CARE 7 requires a minimum 9 month academic year or 3 month summer commitment. Interns will rotate on duty team hours and average approximately 12 – 16 hours per week. CARE 7 prefers a mature student who has the ability to respond in an emergency.
Site training: An orientation to training begins with a formal introduction to Fire and Police Department procedures. The training program will address crisis intervention techniques such as death notification and bereavement, dealing with a suicidal client, dynamics of domestic violence, and the methods of critical incident stress debriefing. Training is continual and addresses the interventions and critical incidents that are a part of this experience. Training includes: grief support, crisis intervention techniques, involuntary petition for commitment, death notification, and critical incident stress debriefing. Interns will be a part of a team and never be expected to function without the backup of a staff member who is on duty and available by pager. This is an excellent internship for those interested in crisis intervention.
Direct client contact: Students accepted by the City of Tempe will have an opportunity to participate in a unique team effort and experience the dedication of emergency service personnel. There is always trained staff available and no student is expected to contribute if the situation is too demanding or if the student feels too vulnerable in that crisis. Clients are often in shock and need immediate support and guidance. Students will learn through initial and on-going participation in crisis intervention.