Each year, Racine’s Sexual Assault Services and Stop Child Abuse & Neglect programs co-host an event called Seeds of Change to highlight sexual assault awareness and child abuse prevention during their joint April awareness month. The sixth annual Seeds of Change, originally scheduled for April 1 and then postponed until Sept. 9, will not be able to occur in 2020 due to the restrictions and health risks related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead, SAS and SCAN will be celebrating its award winners and recognizing their good works in social and print media.
Star of Courage
SAS’s Star of Courage Award was presented to Jason Meekma, executive director of Focus on Community. SAS and SCAN served the community as programs of Lutheran Social Services for decades. On Jan. 1, 2019, that relationship ended putting program funding in limbo and the programs’ existence in jeopardy. Meekma stepped forward to partner with SAS and SCAN as its fiscal partner and offer Focus resources so services could be uninterrupted. Both organizations appreciate his support and flexibility with its staff throughout the complicated transition process and his leadership, expertise and guidance that have enabled SAS and SCAN to remain essential sources of support in our community.
Star of Hope
SAS’s Star of Hope Award was presented to Diane Wooley. For almost two years, Wooley has been a SAS volunteer answering the 24-hour crisis line and responding to both the Aurora Memorial Hospital of Burlington and Ascension-All Saints Hospital in Racine. In this role she provides information, comfort, and support to individuals who have been sexually assaulted and who often have no one else to turn to for support in a difficult time. As a certified yoga instructor, Wooley strives to be a calming presence for people on their journey to health and self-awareness. Wooley made it possible for SAS to offer yoga and meditation experiences to survivors, advocates and community members.
Star of Support
SCAN’s 2020 Star of Support Awards were presented to Kathy Christensen, Barb Steltenpohl, and Carrie Messersmith. These women have been the helping hands to the SCANMAN Puppet Show for almost 20 years teaching kindergarteners about stranger safety and unsafe touches. Collectively, they have volunteered for more than 600 shows and entertained and educated more than 10,000 children. They have volunteered their time to help kids remember that they are special, they deserve to be safe, and that there are lots of grownups out there who care enough to help them.
Special thanks to our event sponsors, Managed Health Services and Thrivent Financial. Also, our gratitude goes out to Representative Greta Neubauer who was scheduled to be the keynote speaker. We are hopeful that we can all gather in person to hear her message in April 2021.
Want more information? Want to help? Call 262-619-1634. Charitable contributions can be mailed to SAS and/or SCAN at 2000 Domanik Drive, Racine, WI 53404.
SAS is currently funded by these types of donations as well as by the United Way of Racine County, the Racine Dominican Mission Fund, the Racine Community Foundation, the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) grant and the Sexual Assault Victim Services (SAVS) grant.
SCAN is funded by United Way of Racine County, United Way of Kenosha County, Racine Community Foundation, Racine Dominican Mission Fund, Burlington Community Foundation, and donations from organizations, schools, individuals and businesses.
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