The month of April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and the One Heart Campaign will be working to raise awareness for child abuse, Director of Marketing for the One Heart Campaign Tori Smith said.
The campaign focuses its efforts on April, during which it will be organizing events to raise money and promote awareness of child sexual abuse both on campus and beyond, Smith (junior-finance) said.
Smith spoke to the State College Borough Council about the campaign’s upcoming events and to ask for the borough’s support, she said.
The council on Monday approved the campaign’s use of Heister Street for its Rock Against Rape event on April 12, Smith said.
The campaign is also organizing a 4K/6K run on April 6 to raise awareness for child sexual abuse, Smith said. Rather than a typical 5K run, it will consist
of a 4K run and a 6K run to
symbolize the statistic of
1/4 girls and 1/6 boys who are sexually abused before age 18, Smith said.
The One Heart Campaign began as a project within the Penn State Finance Society, Director of the One Heart Campaign Zack DeVoti said.
After the events of the fall of 2011, four students in the Finance Society, Dan Rost,
Anand Ganjam, Smith and
DeVoti began collaborating as a committee within the Finance Society to raise
money and awareness for
child sexual abuse,
DeVoti (junior-finance) said.
When they realized that
there were only two
groups promoting awareness
for child abuse on campus, including themselves, the
committee began developing a relationship with the other club, One Heart, DeVoti said. The club One Heart is where the campaign got its name, and it is now a committee within the club, Smith said.
One Heart is a club that hopes to educate Penn State students, the local community and beyond on child sexual assault, One Heart faculty adviser Lori Bedell said.
The group decided to collaborate with the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape , the charity that Penn State had officially partnered with, DeVoti said. All of the money that they raise goes to PCAR, DeVoti said. Fifty percent of it is allocated to the Vision of Hope fund — which works directly to prevent child sexual abuse — while the other 50 percent goes to the Center County Women’s Resource Center — one of PCAR’s 50 rape crisis centers, DeVoti said.
“We hope to be a model for other universities in education of child sexual abuse,” Bedell said.