Children Helped By SEC Neighbors

PCAK, Lotus, Kentucky DCBS Aid Western Kentucky Families through Geaux Bag Delivery

On January 5, 2022, Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky (PCAK), delivered 200 Geaux Bags to Lotus Children’s Advocacy & Sexual Violence Resource Center in Paducah, Kentucky.  PCAK facilitated this donation via the Louisiana Department of Children & Family Services, whose representatives traveled from Baton Rouge to personally deliver the bags. The Geaux bags will be distributed to children impacted by the December 10, 2021 tornado that devasted the Western Kentucky area.

The Geaux Bags, generally used in Louisiana for a child’s first night in foster care, include many necessary supplies for children, including a pillow, blanket, personal care items, and an age-appropriate toy.  Lotus and the Kentucky Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) will distribute the bags and other resources, including essential supplies, coping tools, and information about traumatic stress, to various area donation distribution zones and through direct deliveries to children and families.

“We are so grateful to our friends in Louisiana for reaching out with their offer of assistance, and for their personally making the trip to deliver the Geaux bags. Our spirit of partnership spans across state lines, and we know this donation will make a difference in the lives of children who have been uprooted because of the tornado in Western Kentucky,” said Jill Seyfred, Executive Director of Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky.

“Our community and statewide partnerships have played a key role in our efforts to address the needs of survivors, children, and families in our region impacted by the tornado,” said Lori Wells Brown, Executive Director of Lotus. “We are grateful to PCAK and the Louisiana Department of Children & Family Services for coordinating this donation, and to the Kentucky Department for Community Based Services, for their partnership in supporting impacted survivors, children, and families in building resilience as our communities continue recovery efforts.”

Founded in 1987, Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky is the leading statewide child abuse prevention organization.  They are the Kentucky chapter of Prevent Child Abuse America and offer statewide programs and services.

Lotus is Kentucky’s designated Children’s Advocacy and Sexual Violence Resource Center for the Purchase Region.  Lotus’s mission is to support survivors, strengthen families, and empower communities.  Committed to ending child abuse and sexual violence, Lotus works to cultivate safe, equitable, just communities where all persons thrive.

The Kentucky Department for Community Based Services provides services and programs to enhance the self-sufficiency of families; improve safety and permanency for children and vulnerable adults; and engage families and community partners in a collaborative decision-making process.

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To learn more about Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky, visit www.pcaky.org.

To learn more about Lotus Children’s Advocacy and Sexual Violence Resource Center, visit www.hopehealgrow.org.

To learn more about the Kentucky Department for Community Based Services, visit https://chfs.ky.gov/agencies/dcbs/Pages/default.aspx.

Our Top Ten Mission Moments of 2021

As we reflect back on 2021 and celebrate our accomplishments, our hearts are heavy as we continue, as a united Commonwealth, to lift our Western KY neighbors up with our prayers, donations and volunteer time. We thank you for your commitment to all Kentucky’s children, youth and families.

10. It’s hard to hire people during a pandemic. But, we are so pleased to welcome Amanda Royer (left) and Sara Early Jenkins (right) to our team. Amanda is our Manager of Partner Relations and Sara is our Programs and Trainings Coordinator. They started their tenure with us in October and hit the floor running.

9. Partnering with UofL to create surveys which will provide us with valuable data on our partners’ primary prevention and fatherhood activities, as well as a summary of how they are faring as a result of COVID.

8. Our work was nationally recognized when our staff was chosen to present four different workshops to national audiences. We are a small, but mighty staff who have trained thousands of people, and have a wealth of expertise in a wide array of topics. We’re so proud of our staff members!

7. Offering five trainings during Child Abuse Prevention Month that attracted 770 participants. Trainings were offered free-of-charge, thanks to our sponsor, WellCare.

6. Becoming an accredited No HIT Zone agency, and training 25 partners on how they can become No HIT Zones. We also provided technical assistance to another state who is looking to replicate our efforts.

5. Positive fatherhood engagement is critical to the overall success and well-being of a child. We are thrilled we received three grants to promote our work in this area. Thanks to Traditional Bank, American Electric Power and the Cralle Foundation for their support.

4. Even though we were (are?) in the throes of a pandemic, the breadth of participation we received for our Child Abuse Prevention Month activities was phenomenal. We distributed more than 40,000 pinwheels and almost 70,000 pieces of information. More than 60 groups participated in our Wear Blue Day efforts, and our website saw an increase of 36% in hits for the month.

3. We held our 2nd virtual Kids Are Worth It!® Conference in September, and again, drew more than 400 participants. Even more important, 97% of respondents to the conference survey said they learned of a new resource which will help them prevent child abuse and neglect.

2. Hosting KY’s inaugural Neglect Summit in August. The invitation-only event was well-received and featured national speakers, time for state discussion and action-planning. We held a follow-up planning session in December and are poised to mobilize on this important topic.

1. Launching our “Are They Good For Your Kids” campaign in April, thanks to a $26,600 grant from the Child Victim’s Trust Fund. The Campaign featured a kick-off with the Attorney General, and extensive media coverage. To date, the campaign has had almost 3,000,000 impressions.

For resources to support those affected by storms in Western Kentucky, click here. To donate to Prevent Child Kentucky, click here.

Western Kentucky Resources

In the aftermath of the tornado that impacted Western Kentucky on Friday, December 10, PCAK has compiled a list of resources and ways to help those impacted. This list will be updated regularly as we receive additional needs from our Partners across the state.

Resources

The Kentucky Nonprofit Network is compiling a list of resources available as well as those needing assistance. To list a resource or request assistance, please use the forms below.

1. If your nonprofit is providing services to those impacted, please share the information here: https://bit.ly/nonprofitstormservices.

2. If your nonprofit needs assistance to be able to get up and running to provide services, please share that information here: https://bit.ly/nonprofitstormneeds.

Additionally, His House Ministries, a nondenominational church in Mayfield is organizing volunteers to clear debris and serving hot meals for victims of the tornado. Members are posting daily updates on their Facebook page, here: https://www.facebook.com/hishousetv.

Governor Beshear and Team Kentucky have developed this webpage to provide answers on a variety of topics: https://governor.ky.gov/tornadoresources

Donations

1. Top Shelf Lobby is organizing a Christmas Toy Drive and diaper drive for those in the Mayfield community. Unwrapped donations will be accepted at Top Shelf Lobby (302 Shelby Street, Frankfort, KY 40601) or Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky (801 Corporate Drive, Ste. 120, Lexington, KY 40503) until noon on Friday, December 17.

2. The Kentucky Emergency Management Division has organized a survey to collect information from those who would like to donate their skills or time to those in Western Kentucky. At this time, please do not head to Western Kentucky thinking you are going to be able to help, as there are state and federal officials on-site coordinating all details and volunteer efforts.

Complete the survey here.

3. If you are interested in donating items to those in Mayfield, donations can be taken or shipped to the Mayfield-Graves County Fairgrounds (1004 KY-121, Mayfield, KY 42066). Items needed include: water, flash lights, head lamps, batteries, work/ utility gloves, new socks, new undergarments, blankets, coats, warm clothes, shoes, and toiletry items).

4. Blood donation is especially important in the aftermath of a natural disaster. To donate blood at your local Kentucky Red Cross, please visit this link: https://www.redcrossblood.org/. To donate blood through the Kentucky Blood Center, please visit this link: https://kybloodcenter.org/find-a-drive/.

5. Governor Beshear has organized a Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund which will accept monetary contributions. To donate, visit this link: https://secure.kentucky.gov/formservices/Finance/WKYRelief.

6. The Red Cross is currently accepting monetary donations several different ways:

a. Donate online here:

b. Text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief

c. To donate by phone via credit care, or to ask questions about donating money to the Red Cross, please call 1-800-HELP NOW (1-800-435-7669).

7. The United Way of Kentucky is accepting monetary donations to support impacted communities. To donate, visit this website: https://www.uwky.org/tornado. Families needing help can also call 211, Kentucky’s United Way helpline 24/7, 365 days a year.

8. The Rex Chapman Foundation is partnering with the Blue Grass Community Foundation to assist with tornado relief efforts. Donations are accepted online here: https://bgcf.givingfuel.com/rex-chapman-relief-fund.

9. Those in Dawson Springs especially need tarps, totes, and blankets.

10. Mercy Chefs, based in Virginia, are deploying to Mayfield to provide meals to victims. You can donate to their disaster relief efforts here: https://mercychefs.com/kytornado/.

11. Disaster Relief At Work, Inc. (DRAW) aims to help communities across the United States during natural disasters. DRAW is providing needed supplies to the affected communities from Kentucky to Arkansas in the next 24-36 hours. You Can support DRAW’s efforts here: https://drawbuckets.org/.

12. The Johnson Bar, a local business in Paducah, is collecting items to donate to first responders. For a list of items to donate and more information, please visit their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/thejohnsonbar/.

13. The Community foundation of Western Kentucky has set up a Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund. Donations can be mailed to- CFWS Disaster Relief Fund PO Box 7 Paducah, KY 42001, dropped off at the US Bank Building- 333 Broadway, Suite 530, Paducah, KY 42001, or made online here: https://www.paypal.com/donate/?hosted_button_id=ZJN8MRXNLQV2G.

14. Mayfield Community Foundation is accepting monetary donations here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/mayfield-kentucky-tornado-relife

15. The Kentucky State Police have created a Western Kentucky Tornado Relief page, found here: https://kentuckystatepolice.org/westernky-relief/.  This page contains opportunities for volunteering, donations, and FEMA relief.

For another list of ways to assist Western Kentucky, please visit WDRB’s website, here: https://www.wdrb.com/news/how-to-help-victims-impacted-by-the-tornadoes-in-western-kentucky/article_c6f80c6e-5aaf-11ec-bcbb-af18ae919a3a.html.

Shelter, Food, and Clothing Needs

The Kentucky Red Cross is working with those impacted in Western Kentucky. If your home was damaged or destroyed by the severe weather, and you need Red Cross assistance, you can call 1-800-RED-CROSS. If you need a safe place to stay, you can find a list of open shelters here: https://www.redcross.org/get-help/disaster-relief-and-recovery-services/find-an-open-shelter.html.

The Kentucky Red Cross has established the following shelters:

  • First United Methodist Church,100 Church St., Hickman, KY 42050 – Contact: Justin Jackson 270-254-0261
  • Wingo Old Cumberland Presbyterian Church, 334 Lebanon St, Wingo, KY 42088 – Contact: Pastor RB Mays 270-983-0333
  • The Way Center, 449 Lebanon Street, Wingo, KY, 42088 – Contact: Pastor Ike Murphy 270-564-0699 (The Wingo Old Cumberland Presbyterian church and The Way are next door to each other and are sharing resources)
  • Fancy Farm Knights of Columbus Hall, 20 KY Hwy 39, Fancy Farm, Kentucky, 42039, – Contact: Todd Hayden, Commissioner 270-705-1051
  • Lone Oak First Baptist Church, 3601 Lone Oak Road, Paducah, KY 42003 – Contact: Pastor Hank Garner 704-699-3473

Healthcare Resources

The American Psychological Association has resources available for everyone regarding how to process anxieties and fears following a tornado. Those resources can be found here:

Utility Resources

The contact for the Western Kentucky Rural Electric Cooperative is 1-877-495-7322. The Western Kentucky Rural Electric Cooperative operates Monday- Friday 7:30 AM- 5:00 PM.

Additionally, LG and E/ Kentucky Utilities can be contacted at 1-800-981-0600.

Monetary donations are being accepted at the organizations/ entities below:

Below, please find links for Go Fund Me accounts for the tornado devastation that hit Community Action Agencies in Kentucky.  This money will go to support and resources for each agency.  

Community Action of Southern Kentucky: https://www.gofundme.com/f/community-action-of-southern-ky-tornado-relief – Bowling Green and other areas within their service region.

Pennyrile Allied Community Services: https://www.gofundme.com/f/db9sq2-pacs-tornado-relief-fund – Dawson Springs, Princeton and other areas within their service region.

West Kentucky Allied Services: https://www.gofundme.com/f/wkas-tornado-relief-fund – Mayfield and other areas within their service region.

Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky’s Statement on Hazard High School Investigation

Children and youth need an understanding of healthy and respectful relationships, boundaries and body safety. They need role models to look to who portray and promote these values and support healthy childhoods. The physical and mental health of Kentucky’s children, youth and parents is at the forefront of the work we do at Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky. While the recent spirit week activities of a Kentucky High School may seem innocent on the surface, the harmful and long-term effects that such conduct may have on the still-forming brains of children and youth must be considered. When something like this takes place, we are teaching youth these behaviors are acceptable. Out of roughly 300 students enrolled in the school, 84 of them (28%) will be sexually victimized prior to their 18th birthday. Our educational institutions are trusted areas where ALL students should be encouraged to reach their full potential, feel comfortable in their surroundings, and most importantly, feel safe with the adults in their lives. 

Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky To Use Historic Grant To Further Fatherhood Initiative

Lexington, KY – Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky (PCAK) is announcing Kentucky Power recently awarded a $20,000 gift to propel its statewide fatherhood efforts. The grant from the
American Electric Power (AEP) Foundation and Kentucky Power is the largest gift received by the statewide child abuse prevention organization for its efforts in the area of positive fatherhood engagement.

The National Survey of Children’s Health shows Kentucky ranks 3rd highest in the nation (at 12%) of children experiencing parental incarceration, and according to fatherhood.gov, among the more than 800,000 parents in federal and state prisons, 92 percent are fathers.

The grant will allow Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky to expand its fatherhood efforts into eastern Kentucky by providing mini grants to eight organizations, offering trainings to existing service providers, and developing materials that will be distributed within the eastern Kentucky area served by AEP. “We are thrilled to be able to expand our fatherhood programming into Eastern Kentucky with this grant from AEP” said Jill Seyfred, Executive Director of Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky

“Investing in the work being done by Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky is an investment in our workforce now and for decades to come,” said. Brett Mattison, KY Power President and Chief Operating Officer. “We know how important moms are, and now research is showing us dads are critical to the overall health and well-being of children. We’re proud to support the efforts of Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky.”’

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Founded in 1987, Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky is the leading statewide child abuse prevention organization. They are the Kentucky chapter of Prevent Child Abuse America and offer statewide programs and services. Learn more by visiting www.pcaky.org.

Kentucky Power, with headquarters in Ashland, provides electric service to approximately 165,000 customers in 20 eastern Kentucky counties. Kentucky Power is an operating company in the AEP system, one of the largest electric utilities in the United States

 

PREVENT CHILD ABUSE KENTUCKY JOINED BY ATTORNEY GENERAL CAMERON TO LAUNCH ‘ARE THEY GOOD FOR YOUR KIDS?’ CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE PREVENTION CAMPAIGN

Frankfort, Ky. (April 5, 2021) —Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky was joined by Attorney General Daniel Cameron to announce the launch of a child sexual abuse prevention campaign entitled, “Are They Good for Your Kids?” The campaign challenges parents and caregivers to consider the adult influences in the lives of their children and equips them with tips and resources to recognize and prevent Kentucky’s youth from being groomed for abuse.

“The ‘Are They Good for Your Kids?’ campaign offers adults the tools they need to help prevent Kentucky’s kids from exploitation and abuse,” said Attorney General Cameron. “Children are profoundly impacted by the adult influences in their life, and it’s important for parents and caregivers to consider who their child is interacting with. It takes collaboration and dedication from all of us to address child abuse and neglect in the Commonwealth, and we are proud to support Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky in their relentless efforts to keep Kentucky kids safe.”

The campaign, launched during Child Abuse Prevention Month, was developed by Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky and funded by a grant from the Kentucky Child Victims’ Trust Fund, administered by the Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Prevention Board within the Attorney General’s Office. The campaign aims to stop child abuse before it starts by arming every Kentucky adult with the information they need to prevent and identify predator grooming before it leads to child sexual abuse.

“Nearly 60 percent of child abuse victims never report exploitation, making it the most underreported form of maltreatment,” said Jill Seyfred, Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky Executive Director. “Thanks to the support of the Child Victims’ Trust Fund, we have developed this campaign to raise awareness about the importance of carefully choosing who you allow to influence your children. The title of the campaign, ‘Are They Good for Your Kids?’ is the first question adults should ask when allowing someone else to care for their children.”

The resources provided by the “Are They Good for Your Kids?” campaign equips adults with tips to determine who should have access to your children and how to have age-appropriate conversations with your children about the dangers of grooming.

The campaign utilizes digital and traditional platforms, including social media and Lextran bus ads, to direct adults in Lexington, Louisville, and Northern Kentucky to visit Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky’s website where they can access tips, toolkits, and training on preventing child sexual abuse.

“Thousands of families ride or see Lextran buses every day,” said Jill Barnett, Lextran General Manager. “We are thankful for the opportunity to be a part of this campaign that will make our community a safer place, for our riders and their children.”

To learn more about the campaign, visit Pcaky.org/AreTheyGood4YourKids. To learn more about the Child Victims’ Trust Fund, click here.

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PCAK Speaks Out Against Racism and Aims to Prevent its Lasting Impact on Children’s Lives

As racial inequities and injustices permeate our nation, we want to let you know we hear you, we see you, and we stand with you. Racism is an Adverse Childhood Experience that causes toxic stress and trauma; and where there is trauma, our children are impacted. So, it is with aching hearts we pledge to do our work through an equity lens and to be intentional in working collaboratively with our partners, elected and appointed officials to stop the inequities that traumatize our children and follow them through their entire lives. This struggle is our struggle and we are deeply committed to working with you to build a Kentucky where all children, youth, and families can thrive in safe, stable and nurturing environments. We look forward to partnering with you in our efforts to make a change.

As Risk of Child Abuse Rises, Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky Provides Critical Training to Frontline Professionals

Lexington, KY – In times of high stress and uncertainty, the risk of child abuse and neglect increases. This risk, coupled with the drastic decline in child abuse and neglect reports since the COVID-19 crisis began, moved statewide nonprofit Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky (PCAK) to action. In PCAK’s commitment to ensuring cutting edge information is continuously disseminated to frontline professionals and experts across the state, a refresher course was provided with tools and information needed to keep children safe from child sexual abuse. 

“Limited interaction outside the home during the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the danger of undetected child abuse and neglect for many of Kentucky’s at-risk youth,” said Attorney General Daniel Cameron. “I am especially grateful to Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky for their continued work to provide resources to our frontline professionals, including social workers and members of the law enforcement community, through virtual training opportunities. Our children deserve to be protected, and, as Kentuckians, we must do everything we can to defend the innocence of our youth.”

In this refresher of Protecting Your Children: Advice from Child Molesters on May 12, provided with funding from the Child Victim’s Trust Fund, frontline professionals, such as law enforcement, social workers and therapists, were taught not only what to look for to determine if a child is being groomed by a potential predator, but how to talk to children, parents and caregivers about abuse and offender behavior.

“This is unchartered waters for us all, but everyone has a responsibility to keep children safe, especially now,” said Executive Director Jill Seyfred. “Our most vulnerable population is counting on us, and PCAK wants to lead the charge as a resource and advocate for child welfare during these uncertain times.” 

Encompassing child serving organizations from all 172 of Kentucky’s school districts, those trained gained valuable insight on the latest child sexual abuse prevention research, empowering them to drive community-focused solutions, recognize concerning adult behavior and educate peers to keep thousands of Kentucky children safe. 

Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky and its partners in the community who have participated in this refresher course remain committed to the mission of preventing child abuse and neglect before it ever occurs. Through education, awareness, advocacy and training PCAK hopes to inspire action and expand solutions statewide.

PCAK will be providing additional trainings in the months to come. To ensure professionals, advocates and caregivers receive the latest information relevant to today’s new normal, PCAK will be providing training in Recognizing and Reporting in the Times of COVID-19, Safe Sleep Practices and more. 

To learn more or to request a virtual training, visit www.pcaky.org.  

Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky is the Commonwealth’s leading nonprofit committed to the prevention of the abuse and neglect of Kentucky’s children through advocacy, awareness, education and training. Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky serves parents and families to ensure healthy, safe environments for all children, they are the Kentucky affiliate of Prevent Child Abuse America.