Friday, July 03, 2009

Summer Safety Tips - - - Keep Your Children Unmolested, Unscathed And Free From Danger!

Ten Safety Tips to Help Parents Keep Children Safe This Summer

Ten Safety Tips to Help Parents Keep Children Safe This Summer

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children Says Teaching Children About Safety Works

ALEXANDRIA, Va., July 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Summer is an exciting time for kids - what are your child's plans? Will he or she be spending time home alone or going to local parks and swimming pools with friends? The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children offers parents ten safety tips to help keep their children safe this summer.

  1. MAKE SURE children know their full names, address, telephone numbers and how to use the telephone.
  2. BE SURE children know what to do in case of an emergency and how to reach you using a cell phone or pager number. Children should have a neighbor or trusted adult they may call if they're scared or there's an emergency.
  3. REVIEW the rules with your children about whose homes they may visit and discuss the boundaries of where they may and may not go in the neighborhood.
  4. MAKE SURE children know to stay away from pools, creeks, or any body of water without adult supervision.
  5. CAUTION children to keep the door locked and not to open the door or talk to anyone who comes to the door when they are home alone.
  6. DON'T drop your children off at malls, movies, video arcades or parks. These are not safe places for children to be alone. Make certain a responsible adult supervises your younger children at all times when they are outside and away from home.
  7. TEACH your children in whose vehicle they may ride. Children should be cautioned to never approach any vehicle, occupied or not, unless accompanied by a parent or other trusted adult.
  8. BE SURE your children know their curfew and check in with you if they are going to be late. If children are playing outside after dark, make sure they wear reflective clothing and stay close to home.
  9. CHOOSE babysitters with care. Obtain references from family, friends, and neighbors. Many states now have registries for public access to check criminal history or sex-offender status. Observe the babysitter's interaction with your children, and ask your children how they feel about the babysitter.
  10. CHECK out camp and other summer programs before enrolling your children. See if a background screening check is completed on the individuals working with the children. Make sure there will be adult supervision of your children at all times, and make sure you are made aware of all activities and field trips offered by the camp or program.

"Child safety is important all year, but summer is an especially important time for parents and children to include safety in their activities," according to Ernie Allen, President & CEO of NCMEC. "Always listen to your children and keep the lines of communication open. Your children are your best source for determining if everything is okay. Teach your children to get out of dangerous or uncomfortable situations right away and practice basic safety skills with them. Make sure they know they are able to tell you about anything that makes them feel scared, uncomfortable, or confused."

NCMEC also recommends that parents be sure all custody documents are in order and certified copies are available in case your children are not returned from a scheduled summer visit.

For additional safety tips and information visit or

This year the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children celebrates its 25th anniversary. NCMEC has played a role in the recovery of more than 138,500 children. Today more children come home safely than ever before. In 2008, NCMEC helped recover more children than any other year in the organization's 25-year history raising the recovery rate from 62% in 1990 to 97% today. And more of those who prey on children are being identified and prosecuted. Yet too many children are still missing and too many children are still the victims of sexual exploitation. There is much more that needs to be done.

About the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization. Since it was established by Congress in 1984, the organization has operated the toll-free 24-hour national missing children's hotline which has handled more than 2.5 million calls. It has assisted law enforcement in the recovery of more than 138,500 children. The organization's CyberTipline has handled more than 700,000 reports of child sexual exploitation and its Child Victim Identification Program has reviewed and analyzed more than 23 million child pornography images and videos. The organization works in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Justice's Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

To learn more about NCMEC, call its toll-free, 24-hour hotline at 1-800-THE-LOST or visit



Safety tips for parents at theme parks

Walter Pacheco

Sentinel Staff Writer

Safety tips:
  • Pay careful attention to where children are and who they are with at all times. They should not be alone in the park or become isolated.
  • Children should tell parents or guardians if anyone approaches them or makes them feel scared, uncomfortable, or confused. If separated from adults, they should go to the closest guest services center.
  • Families should discuss where to meet if lost or separated. Get a map of the park prior to the visit or after arriving.
  • Accompany young children on all rides. Older children should stay in groups and take a friend with them.
  • Always accompany younger children to restrooms in the park. Older children should not go to the restroom alone.
  • Report any suspicious or inappropriate behavior to park authorities.
  • If you have a cell phone, keep it on and make certain your children know those numbers.
  • Children should not wear clothing displaying their names.
  • Children should not talk to strangers.
  • If parents are not participating on a field trip, they should find the chaperone's contact information.
SOURCE: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.


Your health: Tips for a safe, fun summer
by Terry Hollenbeck, MD
07.03.09 - 11:21 am
Over the years of my emergency/urgent care career, I’ve dealt with many different injuries and illnesses commonly seen during the summer months. With that in mind, I’d like to share my thoughts on making this a safe summer for everyone.

n Sunscreen: Almost everyone who spends time out in the sun must wear sunscreen to block the harmful, damaging effects of the sun’s ultraviolet rays. Use a sunscreen that offers protection against both UVA and UVB rays and has an SPF rating of at least 30. Apply it liberally and often (at least every two hours). Parents, protect your kids’ precious skin.

  • Insects: Beware of the many summer bugs lurking out there. For mosquito protection, use a repellent that contains DEET, which, when used as directed, is safe for adults and children older than 2 months. Regarding the stinging insects such as yellowjackets, wasps and honeybees, avoid them if they are in your vicinity. If you do get stung by a honeybee, which is the only one of the stinging insects that leaves a stinger behind in your skin, remove it as quickly as possible by any means possible. It is OK to just pull it out with your fingers and not waste time finding something with which to scrape it off. Immediately apply ice to the sting. Also, when out in a wooded or grassy area, always check your entire body for ticks when you get home. If you find one, remove it as soon as possible by getting a pair of tweezers, grabbing the tick close to the skin and pulling it straight out.

  • Poison oak: The best protection is to recognize it and avoid it. If you come into contact with poison oak with your skin, clothing (including shoes and shoe laces), or garden tools, wash the affected area immediately with soap and water. Poison oak oil must be washed off your skin within a few minutes to avoid the dreaded rash. Remember, all parts of the poison oak plant contain the nasty oil, including the leaves, branches and roots.

  • Heat: Heat exhaustion is marked by extreme sweating; fatigue; and cramps. Heat stroke (a life-threatening condition) is marked by lack of sweating; red, hot skin; and a very high body temperature. Both conditions can usually be prevented by drinking plenty of liquid and avoiding direct sun as much as possible, especially between the hours of 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.

  • Water safety: Four thousand Americans drown every year, with most victims being men by a factor of four times more than women. Alcohol is frequently involved. So make sure the kids are supervised in the water every single minute. Watch out for rapid currents, rip tides and rocks, depending on where you are, and always be aware of your surroundings. Boat injuries claim another 700 American lives a year. Drive your boat sensibly, have enough life preservers on board for all passengers and do not drink alcohol and drive.

  • Bicycling: Wear a helmet! No matter how obvious this bit of advice is, I still see people riding without a helmet — and I really cringe when I see children without this life-saving protection. Head injuries are often very serious, if not deadly, and are inexcusable when they involve the lack of a helmet. Be aware of your surroundings and be in control of your bike at all times. Don’t take foolish chances.

  • Eating: Summer picnics can be a common source of food poisoning, manifested by vomiting and diarrhea. Food left out too long is the usual culprit. Handling uncooked chicken or eating undercooked chicken is also a common source of this illness.

  • Driving: We all drive more during the summer. The cheapest form of life insurance while you are in a car is the good old seal belt. Wear it! Make sure your children are in proper age-appropriate car seats. And hand-held cell phone use while driving your car is now illegal — don’t break the law.

Follow these tips, and have a very enjoyable, safe summer.

Terry Hollenbeck, M.D., is an urgent-care physician at Santa Cruz Medical Foundation in Scotts Valley. A doctor with 34 years’ experience, he invites health-related questions at Information in this column is not intended to replace professional advice. For any medical concern, consult a qualified practitioner.


Keep Summer Safe For Your Kids

With summer underway, outdoor activities are in full swing. However, without the proper precautions, summertime fun can result in serious injury or even death -- especially for kids. Sue Smith, at Children's Hospital of Michigan, says that an adult should always keep an eye on kids while swimming because drowning can happen in a matter of seconds. She adds that no child should be in a boat without a proper Type Two life jacket:


And make sure the kids have their bike helmets strapped on right:


Smith also reminds everyone to keep an eye on the kids when there fireworks are going on.


Letter: Never Leave Child Alone in a Car

Thursday, July 02, 2009

To the Editor:

On Saturday June 20, yet another child died of hyperthermia when left alone in a parked car. April Knight, 2, lived in Kentucky, and at the beginning of summer is already the 13th child in the U.S. to die in a hot vehicle this year.

How can we be sure this does not happen to the children and families in our own community?

The truth is summer may be a fun time of year, but it can present difficult, sometimes dangerous challenges for parents. From inconveniences like bug bites to tragedies like drowning and death, children themselves are often unaware of these issues or too young to understand. Fortunately, many of these accidents are preventable. As parents, babysitters and caregivers, it’s our job to ensure that every child remains safe and healthy in the coming months. Taking a few moments to be aware of these situations is a small sacrifice to make for our children’s wellbeing.

Parents might leave their children alone in a vehicle if they want to avoid waking a sleeping baby or getting the child out of and back into a car seat. But a child can get overheated quickly — it only takes 10 minutes for a car’s temperature to increase 19 degrees Fahrenheit. Long lines or a broken register can make a quick trip in the store unexpectedly longer; meanwhile, the vehicle is growing warmer. This and countless other safety issues for children in parked or running vehicles are very real and very dangerous. A child should never be left alone in a car.

Parenting can be tough at times, and summer safety issues pose a special challenge. Luckily, resources are available dedicated to helping parents make the season both fun and safe. Visit the Parent Resource Center on Stop Child Abuse Now (SCAN) of Northern Virginia’s Web site at and look for the feature on summer safety. Reading through tips on children in cars, preventing sunburns, water safety, finding supervision and other topics in our summer safety section is an easy way to increase your knowledge and prepare for this season. Take time to learn more now, and keep summer the fun-filled time it should be for you and your children.

Diane Charles

Executive Director

SCAN of Northern Virginia


Keeping Children Safe From Predators

Tuesday , February 14, 2006


This is a partial transcript from "Hannity & Colmes," February 10, 2005, that has been edited for clarity.

SEAN HANNITY, CO-HOST: Keeping children safe from predators is every parent’s top priority and now parents have a tool to help them do just that. "The Safe Side" is an innovative series of child safety videos that aid in teaching parents and children the important messages of safety in a variety of different situations.

Joining us now are two of the collaborators behind "The Safe Side." Of course, we have the host of "America’s Most Wanted." John Walsh is with us. And the creator of "Baby Einstein," Julie Clark is with us.

Welcome, both of you back to the program.

First of all, my kids, I didn’t have to make them watch this video. Because once I put it in, it was like every other video that you put in, they just loved it. They stood there. They watched it. We talked about it. It’s mind-boggling to me how many of these predators are out there, isn’t it?

JULIE CLARK, "THE SAFE SIDE": It’s stunning. It’s absolutely stunning. And parents have to have these conversations with their children. And what we hear at "The Safe Side" all the time is "I don’t know how to talk to my kids about it."


CLARK: I don’t want the kids to be afraid of everybody that they see. And of course, you don’t. But you want your kids to have the right information and know what to do. So that’s what this is all about.

HANNITY: John, it frustrated me somewhat. I had you both on the radio and right here on this program. You, rightly so, were trying to get this Child Safety Act of 2005 passed. A lot of these guys didn’t have the moral courage to stand up here.

But we’ve got a problem in every small town and every city in this country. These guys are lurking in every neighborhood — there are no exceptions — that they are predators of little children.

JOHN WALSH, HOST, "AMERICA’S MOST WANTED": Absolutely. And there’s no way to track the ones who don’t comply with their parole or probation. You know, I thought parole or probation was a privilege, but we have 550,000 convicted sex offenders in this country. These are the guys that have been convicted and are felony convictions.

And 150,000 of them are missing. So there is no way to track them. No way to know if they’re going state-to-state. We had a case last week on "America’s Most Wanted" where a guy had two warrants out for him for violating his parole as a sexual predator, came into Florida and molested three little girls.

How do you tell those girls and those parents that the United States Senate didn’t have time to pass the Child Safety Act of 2005, and we have to reintroduce it for 2006, get it passed in the House and the Senate? I have to ask, what was the Senate judiciary doing this time around?

HANNITY: Obviously, they were too upset with, you know, giving lectures to Judge Alito, which they probably could have done in about a day.

What is the status? When you reintroduce this bill you have to now go back to the beginning. This — this was why we had some urgency the last time you were on the program. It didn’t get passed. How can people get behind it and how short did you fall here?

WALSH: Well, first of all, they can visit, the Web site where they can find this video. And Julie did a great job. She’s the genius who created "Baby Einstein" and put all her heart and soul into this video.

So they generated almost 20,000 letters to U.S. senators, did. And you can find that. You can find a sample letter, who your senators are, and write them.

But you’re right. We have to reintroduce it before the House of Representatives, go through all those nightmare hearings. And Mark Foley and James Sensenbrenner kept their word in the House of Representatives. But I was told by Arlen Specter, who’s been friend of mine for years, and everybody on that Senate judiciary, Democratic and Republican, that they’d get this bill done. And it’s about time that they do it, sooner the better, because these guys are roaming around the country.

HANNITY: Have you been up to Washington? Have you spoken to these guys, too?

CLARK: I have not, but boy, John has been up there constantly.

HANNITY: Yes, I know he has.

CLARK: It’s been fantastic.

HANNITY: What is the whole premise behind this? You obviously know that there are predators out there, but the idea is to teach children how to react. Are they capable?

CLARK: I think kids are really capable of knowing the right thing to do. Avoiding the situation, and that’s what we try to tell kids. You know, you get in the car, you put on your seatbelt every day.


CLARK: You don’t get into an accident every day. You do it because you want to be prepared, and you want to be ready and know what to do if the situation arises. And that’s what "The Safe Side" is all about.

HANNITY: Yes. I want to go — John, I want to ask this question. The recidivism rate is so high for these predators. Why do we even let them out at all and have these — for example, I went to the New York Web site and literally you cannot follow, because you’re supposed to be able to find predators in your neighborhood. Why do we even let them out, knowing how high the recidivism rate is for these predators? Why let them out?

WALSH: Well, you and I have talked about this a million times. I mean, little Jessica Lunsford was kidnapped and murdered and buried alive by a guy that had 22 convictions, who was in noncompliance as a sexual offender. He was living 150 yards from her house and stalked her and broke into her house in the middle of the night.

I don’t know why we let them out. I don’t know why we as a society don’t accept the fact that they are not curable. I don’t know anybody in the psychiatric community that says we can cure these guys. So if we can’t cure them and we don’t keep them in jail as long as they should be there, I say they should be on a penile colony on Mars. We’ve got to — we’ve got to at least track them.

COLMES: "The Safe" — you do this in a very interesting way, a very creative way, that you don’t scare the kid. You actually make it fun for them. And it would be very easy to do it another way. How did you manage to do it in a way that gives them entertainment value as opposed to, "Oh, my God?" A frightening way.

CLARK: Right. Well, we had to make it fun. You’re exactly right. Because kids, the way that they learn is by repeat viewing. So we wanted them to watch it again and again and again.

We use a great host, a very, very funny person. There’s a gorilla. There’s a dog. There’s lots of goofy stuff that happens in the video. It was written by Carol Cordova, who’s a wonderful writer. She’s been teaching child safety for 20 years.

COLMES: Right.

CLARK: Great, great stuff. And that was, you’re exactly right, the key.

COLMES: They actually — the kids want to watch it?

CLARK: They want to watch it. You know? And parents are talking to them about it, and it’s opening up these conversations with parents and kids. And it’s great.

COLMES: In terms of the safety act we talked about, John. We talked about the trouble you had getting it passed. Specifically what would it do? What are the provisions of that piece of legislation?

WALSH: It would create a national sex offender registry. Some states sort of adhere to Megan’s Law. Some sheriffs don’t do it. Some chiefs of police don’t.

It would create a national sex offender registry so we would know. If these guys don’t register when they go state-to-state, it would be a federal crime. And guess who would look for them? Not that one little man police department or one- woman police department, the U.S. marshals would track them down.

If they committed a second offense, they would do 25 to life. It would certainly give us the chance to know that when they went from state-to-state or didn’t comply, that there would be somebody that would go get them.

COLMES: I don’t understand the resistance to this. And you, Julie, have — you must hear from parents all the time.

CLARK: I do.

COLMES: Who just are worried, concerned. We hear so many stories like the Lunsford case and the things that John covers and we’ve talked about on this show. Parents see this and they realize how vulnerable they are.

CLARK: Absolutely. All of us as parents vulnerable. And what I never hear people talking about are the rights of these children, the rights of the children who are victimized. What happens to them? I think that we always hear about the rights of the criminals but never the kids. And these kids’ lives are being destroyed. We have to work on it.

HANNITY: All right, guys.

Watch "Hannity & Colmes" weeknights at 9 p.m. ET!


Fake Rabbi said...

You cannot keep kids safe from me.


'Fake rabbi' suspected of persuading teen to have sex

Policemen patrolling side street in Jerusalem surprised to discover 58-year-old haredi man having sex with 14-year-old newly religious girl. Youth tells investigators she met suspect on internet; 'rabbi' denies allegations

Efrat Weiss
Published: 07.05.09, 14:12 / Israel News

A 58-year-old ultra-Orthodox man was arrested over the weekend on suspicion of posing as a rabbi and persuading a 14-year-old girl to have sex with him.

The police were expected to ask the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court on Sunday afternoon to extend the suspect's remand.

The man was arrested after police officers patrolling Jerusalem on Thursday spotted a suspicious vehicle on one of the capital's side streets. They were surprised to discover the man having sex with a teenage girl inside the car. The two were taken to a police station for questioning.

The girl, a newly religious from central Israel, told her investigators that she had met the "rabbi" on the internet. She said she had approached the man in search of answers to her questions, and that their relationship quickly developed into an intimate one.

According to the girl, the suspect had similar relations with other teenage girls.

The man, who is married and has children, is not an authorized rabbi. According to suspicions, however, he used to present himself as a rabbi in order to get young girls to obey him. He has so far maintained the right to remain silent, and the investigation continues.

Anonymous said...

Catholics, Orthodox Jews Share Concerns for Child Protection, School Choice for Poor

summer safety tips said...

Every parent stress increases when summer is out. Constantly trying to entertain kids and still maintain their safety at the same time is a challenge but when you have special needs children is important to always be on the lookout for hidden dangers.

Ten Safety Tips

1. Be careful if your child is a wanderer, never let them get too far away, they can get lost in minutes.

2. Dress for the weather to avoid heat stroke and other heat related conditions.

3. Make sure to drink plenty of water, sunblock and insect repellent to prevent dehydration, sunburn and bug bites.

4. Bring flotation devices, if your child is going to the pool.

5. Never leave a child unsupervised at a pool.

6. Wear bike helmets while biking to prevent head injuries.

7. Avoid river and stream banks because they have a tendency to be unstable and collapse.

8. Don’t let your children play in the street. It is not safe and becomes a bad habit that could end in an accident.

9. Keep your children away from charcoal and gas grills while they are in operation to prevent burns.

10. Be extremely cautious when there are fireworks nearby. Children could suffer serious burns if the fireworks are improperly used.

Know your child and act accordingly based on their capabilities to have a safe fun summer.

Meir said...

Rabbi Hororowitz is dead wrong on his stance against 'The Child's Victim Act Of New York" bill, but at least he gets it right that Haredim in Israel are way out of line and that their priorities are totally mixed up.

The initiative by Rabbi Yakov Horowitz of Monsey, New York, a haredi educator who has repeatedly condemned haredi violence in the past, comes after three weekends of violent demonstrations by hundreds of haredim in Jerusalem over the Shabbat opening of the parking lot, and on the eve of a planned haredi prayer vigil Wednesday afternoon near City Hall.

"This type of violence is against everything that the Torah stands for and is an ugly perversion of Torah values," Horowitz told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday, in a telephone interview from New York.

Horowitz said that by not speaking out publicly against the violence, even though they oppose it, haredi leaders are empowering extremists in the community.

"The tragedy is that people in our community are not speaking out against this publicly and distancing themselves from it," he said. "We, the silent overwhelming majority, are allowing these hooligans to speak for us."

The American rabbi, who has spearheaded an e-mail campaign against the violence via his Web site ( and is also working to get haredi leaders to speak out against such violent protests, says that he wants the leaders of the haredi community to publicly disassociate themselves from the violence.

"We are to blame for the fact that the guy with the rock is our spokesman, because we didn't fire him years ago," he said.

Horowitz said that it was wrong for rabbinical leaders to be passive about condemning the violence, assuming that people know they condemn it, noting that while many rabbis and leaders decry the violence to their students and congregants, their message is not getting out to the general population.

"Our lack of speaking out and distancing ourselves is perpetuating this distorted view that this type of violence is somehow following the Torah's ways," he said. "Nothing could be further from the truth."

The New York rabbi said that stoning police and motorists on the Shabbat was a greater desecration of God's name than all the secular Israelis driving on the holy day.

The protests, which have been organized by the Eda Haredit sect, were in response to the Jerusalem Municipality's decision to open a parking lot on Shabbat at the urging of police, who said that double-parking on major city thoroughfares on Shabbat due to a dearth of parking spaces was causing a safety hazard.

"Maybe [the Eda Haredit protest organizers] should worry more about the hundreds of our sons and daughters who are in Israeli clubs on Friday night smoking pot, than worrying about secular Jews parking their cars on Shabbos," Horowitz wrote on his Web site, in a column entitled "The Nauseating Violence in Eretz Yisroel."

"Maybe [they] should worry more about the pedophiles in our community who are violating children, more than those outside our community who are violating Shabbos."

Yeshiva of Brooklyn abuse victim said...

Sexual Abuse Effects

Sexual abuse effects on children and youth can be evident in emotional, physical and behavioural ways. These effects can be just as devastating whether there was only one occurrence or there were repeated occurrences. Sexual abuse cannot be compared, because each abuse experience is unique.

Vulnerability Factors:

Children are vulnerable to sexual abuse because of their age, size and innocence. When a child or youth is molested, she/he learns that adults cannot be trusted for care and protection: well-being is disregarded, and there is a lack of support and protection. These lead to grief, depression, extreme dependency, inability to judge trustworthiness in others, mistrust, anger and hostility. And as if all that isn't enough, children's bodies often respond to the sexual abuse, bringing on shame and guilt.

Points to consider:

» Children/youth are unable to protect themselves and stop the abuse.
» Children/youth are susceptible to force.
» Children/youth are susceptible to the use of trickery by offenders.
» Often times, children/youth have no control over their own bodies.
» All too often, children/youth are unable to make others believe them.

The above factors lead to:

» anxiety
» fear
» shame
» a sense of inadequacy
» the need to control situations and others
» a perception of self as victim
» identification with the aggressor

Factors That Influence Sexual Abuse Effects

Miraculously, not all children or youth molestation victims display signs that something is wrong.

FACT: Between 21% and 36% of sexually abused children will display few or no symptoms (Oates, O'Toole, Lynch, Stern & Cooney, 19941).

Why do some victims display a multitude of emotional and behavioural effects, while others display few or none? In spite of few or no outward symptoms, child and youth victims do suffer emotionally. These emotional effects come in varying degrees, depending on the following six factors:

The nature of the relationship between the victim and the offender: the closer the emotional relationship, the greater the emotional trauma.

The age of the child when the abuse began and the duration of the sexual relationship: an ongoing sexual relationship with repeated contacts is generally more traumatic and usually produces more sexual abuse effects than a single contact.

The type of sexual activity the victim is exposed to: sexual acts involving strictly non-contact sexual abuse appears less traumatic than sexual acts that involve contact. It is important to note, however, that trauma and the sexual abuse effects are still very real when any type of sexual abuse occurs.

For an excellent discussion written by Colette Dowling, M.S.W. about sexual abuse in school girls, check out Colette is an internationally renown lecturer and author of eight books, including her best-seller The Cinderella Complex, which has been in print for 25 years.

The degree of physical aggression directed at the victim: violence adds to the trauma of the abuse. Being physically abused, having a mother who is mentally ill, not having someone to confide in, and being socially isolated are significant predictors for childhood sexual abuse (Fleming, Mullen & Bammer, 19972).

The response the victim receives when she/he discloses the abuse: healing is apparent when a disclosure is met with compassion and is followed with effective intervention; if the victim is met with skepticism and accusations, anger, or no response at all when she/he discloses, the sexual abuse effects are compounded.

The availability of a supportive person in the victim's life: a caring, loving, nurturing, and listening person in the victim's life lessens the trauma; a lack of a supportive person intensifies the abuse and leaves the victim feeling even more lonely, helpless, and unworthy.

jew said...

How can a man who is so vehemently opposed to the 'one year window' have written such an article? This doesn't shtim!

1) Let The System Work
By Rabbi Yakov Horowitz and Elliot Pasik | Posted Jul 08 2009
(Rabbi Horowitz's thoughts appear first, in regular font, and Mr. Pasik's follow in italics.) There is an important "take-away" lesson to be learned from the case of a frum storeowner in Queens who pleaded guilty in Criminal Court to molesting a young boy several years ago - namely, that the legal system works.


Yaakov Aryeh Alter said...

The swine flu scare has recently prompted one of the leading spiritual figures of the ultra-Orthodox world to change one of Judaism's time-honored traditions - that of drinking wine together from the same glass.

Yaakov Aryeh Alter, seventh and current rabbi of the Hasidic dynasty of Ger, instructed his disciples in Jerusalem a few weeks ago to toast with individual and disposable plastic cups containing a few drops of wine from the rabbi's own glass.

Hasidic Jews have toasted from the same cup at events and meals for at least 200 years.
The rabbi, who heads the largest Hasidic group in Israel, is known for his sensitivity to health issues. A few years ago, when Israel was gripped by the avian flu scare, he refrained from eating eggs until he received ones specially-imported from abroad.

Sources close to him say that his latest decision about toasting was in no way meant to protect his own health, but that of the thousands of people who follow him.

Yeshiva students who recently came from the United States and sought to meet the rabbi were asked by his aides not to shake the rabbi's hand when they see him in his Bnei Brak home.

A popular story about the rabbi's grandfather, Abraham Mordechai Alter - the dynasty's second head and a prominent writer and ruler on religion - says that when he visited Israel in the early 1900s, he rebuked a man who hesitated about drinking from the communal glass of wine.

"A hundred Jews sipped from this glass, and yet you think the wine isn't clean enough," the popular legend quotes him as saying to the germophobe.

So far, Israel has had more than 750 confirmed cases of the virus, many of whom frequent of the crowded seminaries of the ultra-Orthodox public.

Alter is not the only ultra-Orthodox leader to take precautions. Other spiritual leaders and yeshiva heads are reportedly weary of the prospect of infection in their institutions.

This concern is also reflected in Haredi media, though they prefer the term "Mexican flu." The Health Ministry, under Deputy Minister Yaakov Litzman from United Torah Judaism - who is known to be Alter's right hand man - calls the virus by its scientific name, H1N1.

exposemolesters said...


WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — With the expiration of a law allowing people to sue for childhood sexual abuse that happened long ago, attorneys for the alleged victims are asking for help to hold the abusers accountable.

More than 100 lawsuits have been filed under a statute passed by the General Assembly two years ago that allowed people to file lawsuits that otherwise would have been barred by the statute of limitations. The provision allowing the two-year "lookback" period expired Thursday.

Attorney Thomas Neuberger, who represents the majority of plaintiffs who have filed lawsuits, said his clients are asking people who might have been ignored when they reported abuse decades ago to help them prove their cases.

"If at least 130 survivors had the courage to come forward, other witnesses and documents still can be found," he said. "If you are out there, please come forward and help these survivors obtain justice."

Several of Neuberger's clients appeared at a news conference to thank legislators for passing the 2007 law, which allowed them to file lawsuits against their alleged abusers.

Raymond Donahue, 53, son of a former Wilmington police captain, said his lawsuit forced officials with the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington to turn over personnel records of a priest Donahue claims repeatedly raped him in 1967 when he was as 12-year-old altar boy.

The records included a letter that said the pastor was insubordinate and disrespectful, and took a young boy to his room even though it was against rules.

"Without our General Assembly, this secret document would have remained hidden forever," Donahue said.

French bastard from Le Marais said...

Just because I complained that my Ris de Veau Grand - Mere wasn't stir fried, is not good enough reason to have them labeling Frenchmen this way.


French tourists seen as world's worst: survey
Thu Jul 9, 6:06 am ET

PARIS (Reuters Life!) – French tourists are the worst in the world, coming across as bad at foreign languages, tight-fisted and arrogant, according to a survey of 4,500 hotel owners across the world.

They finish in last place in the survey carried out for internet travel agency Expedia by polling company TNS Infratest, which said French holidaymakers don't speak local languages and are seen as impolite.

"It's mainly the fact that they speak little or no English when they're abroad, and they don't speak much of the local language," Expedia Marketing Director Timothee de Roux told radio station France Info.

"The French don't go abroad very much. We're lucky enough to have a country which is magnificent in terms of its landscape and culture," he said, adding that 90 per cent of French people did their traveling at home.

"So when they're on holiday they can be a bit stressed, they're not used to things, and this can lead them to be demanding in a way which could be seen as a certain arrogance."

French tourists are also accused of generally spending less than other nationalities when abroad.

De Roux said the French, not accustomed to leaving large tips at home where a service charge is automatically levied on restaurant bills, can seem "tight-fisted" compared with other nationalities.

The Japanese ranked top of the Best Tourist survey, with the British and the Germans judged the best of the Europeans.

But French tourists received some consolation for their poor performance, finishing third after the Italians and British for dress sense while on holiday.

(Reporting by Joseph Tandy; editing by James Mackenzie)

fatso mago said...

Michael Jackson's nose is prebebly de reeson he vus so matzliach in melesting younger boys.

molester yehuda nussbaum from yob said...

I live on the fear I put into children. When I inflict physical pain, and when I touch their private areas, there is nothing more satifying to me than just that. *****


For children suffering from sexual abuse, or inappropriate contact at the hands of an authority figure, it's often hard to know where to turn.

For a child of any age, it's a confusing and scary situation.

ChildHelp Tennessee Director Pamela Dickey says, "When that person that you respect and you have to follow the orders of, starts breaking the rules with you and touching and asking you to do things, then you're put into a position where you don't know what to do next. You don't know who you can turn to."

A relationship that may have seemed special suddenly seems wrong.

Dickey says, "They do a lot of coercive things - buying gifts for the child, giving them privileges - so then the child begins to feel responsible for what's happening to them."

These feelings of shame can make it difficult for children to talk about the abuse they've suffered.

When you think of sexual abuse, you may think of a stranger approaching your child in a public place like this park. But often times, abuse happens in a familiar place with someone your child knows and trusts.

Dickey says, "Sex abuse is insidious. It happens when they are at home in their bedrooms, when they are at sleepovers, when they're camping, when they've gone off with a church group"

Children can contact ChildHelp at 1-800-4-A-Child (1-877-422-4459) at anytime to talk to a safe person.

Locally, Safe Haven also has a crisis hotline for children at 865-522-7273.

The reporting law in our state means anyone who suspects child abuse of any kind is required to report it. That number is 1-877-237-0004.

Research from safe haven estimates one out of every four children will be a victim of sexual abuse by age 18, and 85 percent of those are abused by someone they know.

Safe Haven Director Jane Peoples says parents notice changes.

"They'll think of everything but that horrible possibility that someone in authority has violated their child," Peoples says. "It's just such a hard thing for parents to think about. That it's hard for them to ask that question."

If you notice slipping grades, or a change in routines, it's time to think about the possibility of sexual abuse.

The most common signs of sexual abuse in children include physical complaints, sleep disturbances, and depression. Anxiety and delinquent acts can also be an indicator.

Find a way that's comfortable within your family to talk.

"It's never a good thing to say is so and so abusing you, because kids don't always think of it as abuse," Dickey says. "It's just something that doesn't feel right to them."

Dickey says its better to ask generally if something seems wrong.
Contacting a local agency can help steer families in the right direction.

Peoples says, "The sooner they can come forward and get the help they need and hold that trusted adult accountable, the faster they'll be able to heal themselves so we need to talk about it."

Experts say it is important to use careful wording about sexual assault, especially with young children.

Spinka Rebbi said...

*I thought it was permitted to steal from the government. Even ask Rabbi Dovid Cohen.

NY-based rabbi agrees to plead guilty in LA case
The Associated Press
Posted: 07/13/2009

LOS ANGELES—The head of an Orthodox Jewish group has agreed to plead guilty to a conspiracy charge stemming from what prosecutors say was a decade-long tax fraud and money laundering scheme.

Naftali Tzi Weisz (naf-TALL-e, ZEE, WHY-z) could face up to five years in prison after signing a plea agreement last week that is contingent on other co-defendants also pleading guilty to various charges.

An e-mail message left for Weisz's attorneys was not immediately returned Monday.

Prosecutors say Weisz and others helped donors avoid paying federal income taxes by having them make contributions to charitable groups run by Spinka, a New York-based Orthodox Jewish group led by Weisz.

U.S. attorney spokesman Thom Mrozek says an agreement with the charitable organizations is almost finished.

Elior Chen is brutal said...

Brazil refuses refugee status for Israeli rabbi

July 14, 2009

JERUSALEM (JTA) -- An Israeli spiritual leader who allegedly abused children will not receive refugee status in Brazil.

The decision announced Monday by Brazilian authorities means that Elior Chen, the leader of a Jerusalem religious sect that allegedly has abused children, could soon be extradited to Israel. Chen can appeal the decision.

An Israeli investigation continues into allegations that Chen's abuse of one woman's children led to two of them, aged 4 and 5, being hospitalized in March in critical condition and another, 3, remaining in a persistent vegetative state.

Chen allegedly urged his followers to abuse their children, including beatings, forcing them to eat feces and pouring household cleaners into open wounds, to "correct their corrupt souls."

An international arrest warrant was issued for Chen in April. He originally fled to Canada. His wife and children reportedly are hiding in Belgium.

Anonymous said...

Is kolko at Regency this year? If he is not then where is he finding young boys for his pleasure? Appelgrad needs to help kolko find a swimming coach job.

Agudas Israel senior citizens division said...

These kids were probably molested years ago and they should be too old by now to remember anything.

Posted on Wed, Jul. 15, 2009

NJ crisis counselor denies sex abuse of minors

The Associated Press

ELIZABETH, N.J. - A crisis intervention counselor in northern New Jersey has denied allegations that he sexually abused four children.

Jerry Jones of Roselle, an employee of the Union County Youth Service Bureau, pleaded not guilty Wednesday to having sexual relations with three boys and one girl, ages 6 to 14. He remains jailed on $500,000 bail, and is suspended without pay from his job.

Jones' lawyer, Ronald Ricci, said his client is a devout Christian who is "adamant about his innocence."

Prosecutor Theodore Romankow has said the investigation was launched after one of the children told his parents Jones had assaulted him.

Ricci said Jones did not know any of the alleged victims through his job. Romankow would not say how Jones met them.

Anonymous said...

So called "ultru Orthodox Jews"ought to be ashamed of themselves for rioting and excusing the mother who literally starved her kid to deaths door.

Representatives of the woman - including Deputy Health Minister Yaakov Litzman, who posted some of her bail; Rabbi Avraham Yisrael Froelich, who is supervising her house arrest; and her lawyers - were summoned yesterday to meet with Dotan, along with representatives of the police and the prosecution. The state attorneys said they had not yet tracked down the suspect's four other children. The woman's husband had promised to come forward with them so that police investigators could determine whether they had been abused by their mother.

Taliban mother said...

Court convicts Beit Shemesh mother of abusing children

agudas israel senior citizens division said...

Two federal lawsuits accuse a Delaware judge of fondling two boys in the 1970s before he was a judge.

Forty-4-year-old Gregory Kelly of Las Vegas accuses Delaware Court of Common Pleas judge William Bradley of fondling him at Bradley's house in 1975. Kelly called Bradley a family friend in the lawsuit.

The second lawsuit, filed in New Castle County Superior Court by a 51-year-old state resident identified as John Doe, alleges Bradley fondled him from 1968 to 1971 when Bradley was a Big Brothers Big Sisters of Delaware volunteer.

Attorney Mason Turner said the 71-year-old is innocent of Kelly's allegations.

Attorney General's Office spokesman Jason Miller said Kelly filed a complaint in 1997 but no criminal charges were filed after an investigation.

Information from: The (Wilmington, Del.) News Journal,

victim said...

Thousands of sexually abused children could suffer long-term mental health problems because of a massive shortfall in the availability of therapy, the NSPCC has said.

Every year up to 88,500 sex abuse victims across the UK are left struggling to recover from their ordeal because of a "postcode lottery" in provision of therapeutic services, the children's charity warned.

A new report found there was less than one support programme per 10,000 children in England, Northern Ireland and Scotland - figures for Wales were not available - with some areas apparently offering nothing at all.

Even when therapy was available it was an average of three months before the young victims saw a professional, and in some cases they had to wait a year.

Some therapeutic services are so over-stretched they are closing their waiting lists altogether, researchers said.

Teenagers were found to be particularly likely to miss out on therapy because they may be considered too old for support on a child protection plan but are less able to access services for adults.

The NSPCC's Debbie Allnock, who led the research, said the severe shortage of therapeutic services was a serious problem that needed "huge" investment.

"Sexual abuse can have devastating consequences for a child but it remains a low priority within mainstream mental health services and among local authorities," she said.

"Yet experiences of sexual abuse are common among people with severe long-term behavioural, criminal and addiction problems."

"Long waiting lists mean that if a young person is sexually abused they often don't get the therapeutic help they need unless they also have a child protection plan."

what is yidi kolko doing this summer? said...

Who is making sure he isn't molesting kids in bathing suits?

Rabbi Avi Shafran said...

Capt. Chelsey B. Sullenberger is not my hero. Yidi kolko and Lepold Margulies are. The reason being, there was no agras nefesh in landing a plane on water. It wasn't like there were any buildings in the way. Besdides, sully is ganz a shagatz. A yid is mamash peleh veniflah to suffer the way my friends were treated.

Members of local Jewish community react to FBI arrests said...

July 23, 2009

By Alesha Williams Boyd
Gannett New Jersey

We don't want to be involved.

That was the general sentiment outside Deal Yeshiva Jack and Rachel Adjmi Learning Center, where a few children were still being shuttled out of buses and parents' cars into the religious school this morning shortly after arrests in a federal probe involving the school. Parents said they'd heard nothing of the arrests and didn't want to comment.

One head summer program counselor said he had just received a cell phone call informing him of the arrests. He did not say who made the call.

"I haven't heard anything yet,'' he said, adding he had never seen law enforcement at the site. Franco said any arrests were "definitely upsetting.'' He didn't want to comment further without more information. But, he said, "People are not supposed to abuse power, especially not at a religious institution.''

He asked not to be identified for fear of losing his job.

Rabbis were warned not to comment by an unidentified man who police later said handled maintenance at the site. Police were called and asked to prevent reporters from asking questions.

"I was in there asking questions,'' asked one parent who said he was bringing his children for their first day of camp. He also learned of the arrests through an Asbury Park Press reporter.

"If they're not giving you any information, I don't think it's because anybody's hiding it," he said. "It's because nobody knows."

Ronni Tawil said outside Ohel Yaacob synagogue at Ocean and Lawrence avenues, lined with luxury vehicles with New York license plates, that she hoped the arrests did not give the Orthodox Jewish community a black eye. She said one of the rabbis rumored to have been arrested had taught her sons Judaic lessons before their Bar Mitzvahs, free of charge.

"I hope this disappears,'' Tawil said. "It's my community and we are a great community. We stick by each other."

An unidentified man in a suit and hat outside Ohel Yaacob said, in English, that he did not speak English.

Meir said...

What a pity that rabbis were snared and arrested on national television for curruption. Where was "Rabbi" avi shafran when they needed his big fat mouth to come to their rescue?

The icing on the cake would be to arrest all those perverted child molesters and their enablers. A good start would be "Rabbi" Shlomo Mandel and "Rabbi" Yehudah Nussbaum and "Rabbi" Lipa Margulis and all those Agudah phoneys...

Abuse abounds: No community immune from sexual predators said...

Anyone scanning through the Progress lately has likely been alarmed at the number of sex abuse -- particularly child sex abuse -- arrests and convictions oc­curring within this county and the surround­ing area.

It's disturbing, to put it lightly. During just the past month, there have been various sexual offense cases discussed within the pages of the Progress newspapers.

-- Barry Lyndol Rhodes, 21, of Autauga­ville was arrested on charges of abusing a child under 7 years old.

-- Nakuma Lykes, 31, of Deatsville was ar­rested and charged with first-degree sex abuse of a 12-year-old girl.

-- Damon Cobb, 34, of the Kent communi­ty in Elmore County, was sentenced to 30 years for rape, sodomy and sexual abuse of a pre-teen girl.

-- Max D. Hinton, 21, of Deatsville was convicted of second-degree rape; sodomy; en­ticing a child for immoral purposes; and pro­duction and possession of obscene matter of a person under 17.

-- Kenneth Traywick, 33, formerly of Mill­brook, was sentenced to 50 years for stalking, robbing and raping a woman in Prattville.

-- David Lockett, 32, of Deatsville, was ar­rested on two counts of sodomy for abusing two 3-year-old girls.

And that just scratches the recent surface. During the past few years, there have been many, many more arrests and convictions for sex crimes. Offenders have included teach­ers, religious leaders and other seemingly up­standing citizens and those who appear to be average neighbors.

It's tempting to say, "What is the world coming to?" or "What is wrong with these people?" But there are no answers to these questions.

Sexual offenders, especially those who abuse children, are the lowest of the low. Of­ten, these predators are the very people most would last suspect of such a crime. It's down­right scary how often these predators are family friends, community leaders and rela­tives of their victims.

It's sad but true that every parent and ev­ery woman has to be overly cautious these days. In this gender-liberated society, a wom­an doesn't want to believe that she shouldn't go shopping late in the evening or feel scared to give directions to a stranger. A loving par­ent doesn't want to think about being unable to trust an unsuspecting family member to keep his hands to himself when he's around children.

But, in order to stay safe and to keep our families safe, we have to be less trusting. We have to report even the smallest signs of sus­pected abuse or stalking tendencies. This may be a small community, but tragedy hap­pens everywhere. As much as we might want to think we are immune to this disgusting be­havior, we are not. No one is.

Child sex abuse 'as bad as it gets' said...

A judge Friday sentenced a Gorham man to 50 years in prison for sexually assaulting two girls, videotaping the incidents and sharing images of the victims with other computer users.

James Berke, 46, performed sex acts with a 4-year-old girl and a 7-year-old girl. Evidence seized by investigators, including several videotapes and a bottle of chloroform, suggested that Berke used the chemical compound to render his victims unconscious during some of the assaults.

"This is about as bad as it gets, in my view," Justice Roland Cole said at the sentencing hearing in Cumberland County Superior Court.

Cole said it is rare for investigators to have such damning proof of guilt as he did in this case. "Those tapes are vile and disgusting," Cole said. "But for the tapes, he might not be facing very many serious charges here at all."

Cole convicted Berke on March 16 after a jury-waived trial. The judge sentenced him Friday on six counts of gross sexual assault, three counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, three counts of unlawful sexual contact and one count of violation of privacy.

Deal, New Jersey said...

Need a Kidney? NJ Rabbis can give you a Good Deal

Deal, New Jersey, USA, 26 July 2009. Organ trafficking, money laundering and corruption are just some of the crimes to allegedly have been committed by a ring which included three NJ mayors, five rabbis, two state assemblymen, and a city council president.

The rabbis were really just out to help people that needed kidneys, and if the economics of it allowed, make a few dollars on the side.

The rabbis were paying up to $10,000 in much-needed money to the sellers, and receiving about $160,000 from the buyers, mostly well-to-do Israelis.

And anyone who knows anything at all about the organ trading business always buys live organs. It's true: Studies have shown that receiving a kidney from a living person increases the receipient's chances of surviving by up to ten percent.

And these guys know. One of the kidney dealers, Levy Izhak Rosenbaum, of Brooklyn, said he had been trafficking kidneys for a decade.

The rabbis involved are Saul Kassin, 87, chief rabbi of Sharee Zion, a Brooklyn synagogue; Eliahu Ben Haim, 58, of Congregation Ohel Yaacob in Deal, New Jersey; Mordchai Fish, 56, of Congregation Sheves Achim in Brooklyn; Edmond Nahum, 56, of Deal Synagogue in Deal; and Lavel Schwartz, 57, Fish's brother.

Apparently Deal was a good place for deals, and that's where the FBI and IRS looked first. They raided a Deal synagogue, set amid large Mediterranean-style mansions.

Part of the ordeal involved "pre-existing money laundering network" that moved "at least tens of millions of dollars through charitable, non-profit entities controlled by rabbis in New York and New Jersey," as stated by acting U.S. Attorney Ralph Marra.

"The rabbi asserts his innocence," said Saul Kassin's attorney Robert Stahl after U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark Falk imposed a $200,000 bail bond. "It's a shame that he's caught up in some misunderstanding. Despite his difficult circumstances, he remains confident that the system of justice will prevail."

Some didn't quite appreciate the altruism involved. Governor Jon Corzine said, "The scale of corruption we're seeing as this unfolds is simply outrageous and cannot be tolerated."

"The fact that we arrested a number of rabbis this morning does not make this a religiously motivated investigation," said FBI special agent Weysan Dun. "It is not a politically motivated investigation. It is about crime, corruption, arrogance and a shocking betrayal of public trust."

The elected mayors and other officials, including Hoboken Mayor Peter Cammarano, 32, were charged with an FBI complaint alleging they took bribes.

Cammarano, Hoboken's youngest mayor ever, had only been in office three weeks at the time of his arrest.

An undercover witness, Solomon Dwek, exposed the suspects. In 2006, Dwek was charged with planning to defraud $50 million from PNC Bank. He is a rabbi's son and was the Vice President of the Deal Yeshiva School in West Long Branch, New Jersey.

New Jersey is notorious for its corruption, and has seen the conviction of more than 100 public officials in the past frew years.

Dr Hosni Afleck,

did rabbi dovid cohen know about colmer and did nothing? said...

What molester has R'DC ever turned over to the police? I'm not aware of any. R'DC sent Mondrowitz off to Israel in 1984, and is accused by many people as someone who cannot be trusted and somebody who refused to help alleged victims of abuse when approached.

A Suspected Pedophile Eludes The System - May, 05, 2009

A married Jew with peyos and a black hat, Stefan Colmer used to spend hours, according to reports, reading the Talmud in the main study hall of the Mirrer Yeshiva on Ocean Parkway in Brooklyn. While there, he also befriended some boys in and around the yeshiva and, on occasion, invited a few of them to his nearby home.

And, according to a source close to the case, Colmer allegedly sexually abused several of them — in addition to other young boys from the “general neighborhood” near the yeshiva, a law enforcement source believes.

Colmer, 32, who moved to Israel in early 2007, weeks before any of his alleged victims approached the police, was extradited to Brooklyn in January 2008 and is now being held at Rikers Island, awaiting trial on charges that he sodomized two teenage boys, both 13 at the time, on numerous occasions. He faces up to seven years in prison if convicted on all charges.

What isn’t in the criminal charges against Colmer is that, according to numerous sources familiar with the facts, several years before allegedly abusing the two victims named in the May 2007 indictment he was treated in the sex-offender program of a prominent Jewish agency — only to leave of his own volition before his treatment was completed.

Yet, until his arrest in June 2007, Colmer had never been reported by anyone to the police — not by his alleged victims, their parents or community members who knew of allegations against him — a fact confirmed by a law enforcement source who notes that, until 2007, Colmer had a “clean record.”

Further, because Colmer was never reported to the police and thus came to the agency, Ohel Children’s Home and Family Services, without a mandate from the court, when he dropped out of its offender program around 2002, according to friends, Ohel was not required to report him to the authorities for non-compliance.

For the same reason, his activities were not monitored and his name did not appear on any public registries designed to alert the public to those who might pose a danger to children.

The Colmer case and the way it was apparently handled illuminates a controversial debate raging in the Orthodox community in the wake of the cases of Rabbi Yehuda Kolko, Avrohom Mondrowitz and others: whether suspected cases of child sexual abuse should be dealt with “internally” — even if only initially — by rabbis or professionals within the Orthodox community, or whether they should be handed directly over to law enforcement for investigation.

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It is unfortunate that it has come to this. It is a big darn shame it has come to this. It is very hurtful that it has come to this. But yet, IT HAS COME TO THIS. It has come at the price of a GREAT CHILUL HASHEM. It has come to Hashem having to allow his holy name to be DESECRATED so that his CHILDREN remain SAFE. Shame on all those responsible for enabling and permitting Hashem's name to be desecrated! When you save children you save the future. You save the future you save generations. You save generations you save lives. You save lives you have saved the world!!!!!!!