Thursday, November 16, 2006

From The Awareness Center - The Fate of The Awareness Center is in your hands

I just received this e-mail from The Awareness Center, Inc. Please stop what you are doing and help support the only Jewish organization that I know of that is dedicated to addressing the needs of Jewish survivors of sex crimes.

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November 16, 2006

The Fate of The Awareness Center is in your hands

For the last four years, The Awareness Center has touched the lives of countless survivors and family members of survivors. We have brought the issue of sexual violence to the consciousness of thousands of rabbis, cantors, and Jewish community leaders. Throughout the last year The Awareness Center's site has been averaging around 1/2 million hits per month.

When a survivor calls and asks for our help in finding a therapist, we utilize a network of professionals and do our best to hand-pick referrals that meet the individual's particular needs. When an person calls us in search of help and support, average telephone are over an hour long. At times--especially around holidays and other stressful times--these contacts translate to countless hours of assistance. It is not unusual for us to receive calls from offenders and even probation officers who are seeking help for a parolee. Survivors, Family Members of Survivors and offenders--we do our best to help them find a qualified therapist to work with them.

The Awareness Center has close to fifty articles which were written by our executive and advisory board members; many on issues that you will not find anywhere else. Our articles have been quoted often in other publications. Numerous journalist and researchers have contacted us over the years looking for information and we've done our best to assist them in their work.

The Awareness Center operates a daily electronic newsletter and offers eleven self-help networking groups for survivors and family members of survivors. Networking groups for rabbis and victims advocated are also available.

Our multi-faceted international operations have been going on full time for some years now, and have been maintained in spite of little or no funding. As a result of scarce funding, most operating expenses have been repeatedly coming out of The Awareness Center volunteers' own pockets and on top of uncounted volunteer hours. Survivors in the thousands, as well as their supporters and the professionals who work with them have all reached out to The Awareness Center for help. The number of hits on our web-page alone bears testimony to the service The Awareness Center provides. We would like nothing more than to continue to provide support, information, and assistance to survivors; and education to those who claim to and/or wish to support them. However, we can no longer continue to cover operating expenses out of our own pockets and are facing a financial crisis--

Over the many months and weeks and days and hours of our operation, The Awareness Center received frequent calls and emails of thanks for the help we provided and for shining a light on issues that have been taboo for so long, yet a painful reality to many.

If you believe that sexual abuse and assault are wrong, that survivors of harm are worthy of support, and perpetrators of true assistance; if you believe that children have the right to speak up when they are hurt and to be protected so that no more harm comes to them (or others after them); if you believe that our communities are worthy of healing from the inside-out and that as Jews we are meant to be and CAN be light-unto-the-nations--please help The Awareness Center survive to forward these important goals.

Help us by shining the light--your light--so we can continue. Even a little light can illuminate the darkness, and every little bit can help. Reach into your heart and pocket for whatever amount you believe our children's safety is worth and whatever amount you can spare. You can help save lives. Anyone who saves even one life of Israel, it is said that it is as if they'd saved a whole world! You have it within your power to help save many.

Help us so that survivors can have a place to reach out to. Help us so that we can end harm in our communities and foster pathways of understanding and healing; so that together we can abandon the old ways of secrecy and shame.

Help us keep hope alive. Please take a moment to support those who'd been hurt and seek help. Please show that you care.

The Awareness Center, Inc.
P.O. Box 65273
Baltimore, MD 21209

Contributions to The Awareness Center, a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the United States Internal Revenue Code, are deductible for computing income and estate taxes.


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