The Applachian Peace and Justice Network secures $52,000 for Sexual Assault Prevention Program

The Appalachian Peace and Justice Network has been awarded almost $52,000 from the Ohio Department of Health to fund the Sexual Assault Prevention Program for the coming year!!!  The Sexual Assault Prevention Program has existed in one form or another for over 15 years and was housed at Tri-County Mental Health and Counseling Services up until this year when exiting Program Coordinator, Lauren Riley, began the process of changing agencies.  Tri-County’s primary focus is on providing services to individuals after an incident has already occurred where the Sexual Assault Prevention Program’s sole focus is on Primary Prevention or providing universal educational programming that seeks to stop potential perpetration before it happens.  This past summer, Lauren scoured her community for an organization dedication to prevention education and found fellow Prevention Educator and Director of the Appalachian Peace and Justice Network, Mara Giglio, to be the ideal ally.  The two advertised for the soon to be vacant position of Program Coordinator under the Appalachian Peace and Justice Network and hired local activist and Ohio University alumni, Sarah Fick.

The Sexual Assault Prevention Program is funded by the Ohio Department of Health’s Rape Prevention Grant, which recieves a portion of its funding from the Violence Against Women Act.  This year is the first time in VAWA’s history that Congress has attempted to erode its strength.  The Violence Against Women Act was signed into Law by President Bill Clinton in 1994.  With each reauthorization, it has always gotten stronger, until this year.  This year marks VAWA’s 18th Anniversary and an important year for us to show our support for its reauthorization.   Tomorrow, Wednesday November 14th will be a National Day of Action for the Reauthorization of VAWA.  For more information, visit www.4vawa.org.  For more information on the history of VAWA, visit the White House’s 1 is 2 many page.  The Sexual Assault Prevention Program applied for $60,000 for this year.  In past years, we have always gotten what we asked for.  This year is the first year that we got less.  We got about $8000 less.  This puts a huge dent in the amount of programming that we will be able to offer this year.  From where we stand, it seems that even if we were to get the full $60,000 and were able to maximize what our community can get out of that $60,000, there would still be more need for programming than we would be able to fill.

The Sexual Assault Prevention Program is the only program in SE Ohio that is focused solely on the primary prevention of sexual assault.  The program serves Athens, Meigs, Hocking, and Vinton counties by providing a wide array of free educational programming and workshops to elementary, middle school, high school, and college level classrooms, as well as to parents, community groups, and professionals.  For more information on services offered, check out our About Our Program page.  To schedule a workshop, contact Sarah at saprevention@gmail.com or 740-541-2976.

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