The following is a republished press release from a community organization or member and NOT written by the Ithaca Voice … to submit community announcements to The Voice, contact us at jstein@ithacavoice.com.

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ITHACA, N.Y. — The Advocacy Center of Tompkins County has been selected by the NYS Coalition Against Sexual Assault (NYSCASA) as one of two programs in the state to receive funding through the Sexual Violence Prevention Pilot Projects grant.

The Advocacy Center and the Sexual Assault and Crime Victims Assistance Program at Rensselaer County’s Samaritan Hospital will be working collaboratively with NYSCASA to expand sexual violence prevention activities in their respective counties.

These two sites were chosen through a rigorous competitive application process that was open to all NYS Department of Health certified Rape Crisis Programs.

Elizabeth Isabelle, NYSCASA’s Director of Prevention said the Advocacy Center of Tompkins County was selected in part due to their outstanding progress with the Enough Abuse Campaign (EAC), a campaign that focuses on adult responsibility for preventing child sexual abuse.  Enough Abuse Campaign Tompkins County continues to use EAC materials in innovative ways, and NYSCASA is excited to see the impact on the county with the additional resources this grant will afford.”

The Advocacy Center has provided a wide array of child sexual abuse prevention education programming to youth and adults in Tompkins County since 1982.

In 2013 the Advocacy Center was chosen as one of 3 counties by the NYS Partnership for Child Sexual Abuse Prevention, led by Prevent Child Abuse New York, to pilot the Enough Abuse Campaign. Through a partnership of organizations including law enforcement, BOCES, DSS and others, a committed group of 15 volunteers were trained by Jetta Bernier, EAC Founder and Executive Director. These volunteers now join with the Advocacy Center to equip adults in Tompkins County with the skills to identify, interrupt and appropriately respond to child sexual abuse.

The Advocacy Center will also focus on strengthening the capacity of youth-serving organizations to prevent sexual abuse of the children in their care.

Heather Campbell, Executive Director said “We are thrilled to receive this opportunity to take our work with the Enough Abuse Campaign to the next level. We are planning our next training of trainers and looking to expand these prevention workshops into the rural communities of Tompkins County.”

The Advocacy Center provides services to children, teens, and adults impacted by domestic violence, child sexual abuse, and sexual assault.  Services include advocacy, support, and prevention education.  If you or someone you know has been impacted by domestic or sexual violence and needs support, the Advocacy Center is available 24/7 at 607-277-5000.

Funding for this project is supported by the NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS).

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