In Sunday’s front-page story highlighting the efforts of Penn State lettermen in their quest to help prevent child sexual abuse, the Centre County Child Safety and Protection Collaborative was referenced. On behalf of the collaborative I applaud the efforts of the lettermen and share some important information about prevention efforts here in Centre County.
The collaborative is looking at prevention and victim services. With regard to prevention and after serious research, we have adopted the Darkness to Light program, a nationally known, evidence-based program to prevent child sexual abuse. We have three local trainers and expect to have 20 by early summer. These trainers will set out to educate at least 5 percent of the Centre County population in the Darkness to Light curriculum. There is excellent research that says that if we can accomplish that goal, we will experience a real cultural change in Centre County and make a real difference in preventing child sexual abuse.
The Darkness to Light training takes only two and a half hours and is available to any group in the community. Consider having your civic, employee or even neighborhood group trained. To arrange training, contact the Youth Service Bureau and the collaborative’s trainers to make arrangements. With your help, we can protect our children.
Bradley P. Lunsford Bellefonte
The writer serves as a judge of the Court of Common Pleas of Centre County and is chairman of the Centre County Child Safety and Protection Collaborative.
Original Collaborative Members:
Defend A Child
Centre County Women's Resource Center
YMCA of Centre County
Centre County Youth Service Bureau
Centre County United Way
Centre County Community Foundation
Centre County Judiciary
Centre County District Attorney's Office
Juniata Valley Boy Scouts
Centre County Children and Youth Services
Penn State Outreach
Penn State Counseling & Psychological Services
State College Area School District
Community Help Centre
Centre County Communities That Care
Smart Start-Centre County