One With Courage campaign launched at Kalin’s Center
Houston County Courier
One With Courage is the first public awareness campaign of its kind in the state of Texas, centered around the courage it takes to talk about child sexual abuse. It takes a lot of courage for a child victim to come forward and talk about their abuse Adults also need courage to talk about the issue, learn the signs and report abuse when it is suspected. Debbie McCall, the executive director of Kalin’s Center, said, “We are so proud to be part of this campaign and excited that campaign launch day has arrived.” “This campaign aims to inspire the courage required to take action against child sexual abuse, whether it be starting a dialogue about the issue, equipping adults with the knowledge needed to recognize the signs of abuse or volunteering at a local children’s advocacy center,” McCall said. The Kalin’s Center, a children’s advocacy center for Houston County and Trinity County, is participating in the One With Courage campaign. The campaign will include public service announcements for television and radio airing state wide along with Internet and print advertising, stated McCall. The website www.onewith courage.com features tips on how teachers, parents, business leaders, first responders and citizens can be ones with courage. Suggestions for citizens include: Learn the signs and symptoms of abuse. Educate others about the signs and symptoms of abuse. Start a conversation with friends, family, neighbors, religious congregation members and civic organization members about the signs and symptoms of abuse. Host a One with Courage Day at your organization to share information about the signs of abuse. Report abuse when it’s suspected. Call the Texas Abuse and Neglect Hotline at 1-800-252-5400 or call 9-1-1. “Informed citizens are a key component in the fight against child abuse,” the website states. “Suspected abuse is enough of a reason to contact the authorities. You do not have to have proof,” the website states further. Some indicators may include, but are not limited to, unexplained injuries, changes in behavior, returning to earlier behaviors, fear of going home, changes in eating or sleeping habits, changes in school performance or attendance, lack of personal care of hygiene, risk-taking behaviors or inappropriate sexual behaviors. There are 64 children’s advocacy centers such as Kalin’s Center in Texas serving 158 counties. The centers represent formalized partnerships with law enforcement, child protective services, prosecutors, medical and mental health professionals and others who agree to work together to effectively investigate and coordinate the delivery of vital services to the victims and their families. To learn more about this campaign go to http://www. onewithcourage.com or contact McCall at 936-545-9455.