Ending Domestic and Sexual Abuse in Mississippi

shelter, counseling, education and continued support

The FACT Conference is coming up on October 11th!

Find out more about it this Saturday, October 1st at 5PM when FACT Committee Members Carole Ann Sewell and Mary Katherine Spencer join Terry Smith on WTVA’s FOCUS.

“For nearly 30 years, WTVA’s weekly Focus program has spanned a vast array of issues and events key to our communities. From medical to musical, political to financial, economic development to our military, host Terry Smith strives to learn about all aspects of what makes this area so unique. And, he asks the questions of newsmakers to get the answers you want to know about.”

National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Homicide 5 K walk September 24, 2011 9 a.m.

• WHO: Survivors of homicide *family and friends and the community.

• WHAT: The National Day of Remembrance for Homicide Victims

• WHERE: Saltillo City Park, walking track – Saltillo, Ms

• WHEN: Saturday, September 24, 2011 9 am (we’ll open registration table at 8 am) You may walk as an individual or form a team in memory of a victim.
• WHY: To show community support for the victims and their loved ones and to advocate for the prevention of violence in our communities.

Please bring something that reminds you of your loved one.

*homicide victims include murder, manslaughter, vehicular homicide, war, terrorism and other tragic deaths.

Hosted by Survival, S.A.F.E. and The Mourning After
Providing services in North Mississippi

Call: 1-888-915-7788 for more information or to pre-register a “walking team”


RAINN’s Back to School Safety Tips

Click here to go to the original article!

RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization, today released helpful safety tips for college students going back to school. College aged students are at the highest risk for being sexually assaulted; the majority of rapes are committed by someone who the victim knows. Being aware of this risk, looking out for your friends and using a bit of common sense are often the first steps in staying safe.

This year’s Safety Tips focus on practical things students can do to keep themselves and their friends safe. Our tips go beyond standard campus resources, like campus security escort teams, vans, emergency phones, etc. and emphasize the risks that exist from those other than stranger attacks.

“While you can’t prevent a perpetrator from committing an act of sexual violence, practical steps can be taken to improve safety and reduce risk,” said Katherine Hull, spokesperson for RAINN. “It’s important for students to be made aware of these possible risks, look out for one another, use common sense and know how and where to get help if they need it.”

Trust your instincts and be yourself. If you feel unsafe, or even uncomfortable, in any situation, go with your gut. Don’t worry about what others think; your own safety comes first.

Use your cell phone as a tool. Make sure it’s fully charged before you leave home and if you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation, shoot a quick text for a “friend-assist.” Make a plan before you go out just in case your phone dies, so you can meet up with your friends at a specific location at a certain time.

Be careful when leaving status or away messages online and when using the “check-in” feature on Facebook or Foursquare. Leaving information about your whereabouts reveals details that are accessible to everyone. Use common sense so that someone can’t track your every move. If you wouldn’t give the information to a stranger, then don’t put it on your online profile.

Wait to let your guard down until people earn your trust. A college campus can foster a false sense of security. Don’t assume people you’ve just met will look out for your best interests; remember that they are essentially strangers.

Don’t be afraid to hurt someone’s feelings. If you find yourself in an unsafe situation it’s OK to lie. Make up an excuse as to why you have to go. It’s better to make up a reason to leave than to stay in a possibly dangerous situation. Your safety comes before someone else’s feelings.

If you see something, say something! Intervene if a situation seems questionable or if someone’s safety is at risk. By taking action you can prevent a crime from being committed. Remember you can also contact your resident assistant or campus police.

Stick with your friends and watch out for each other. Arrive together, check in with one another throughout the night, and leave together. Think twice about going off alone and if, for whatever reason, you have to separate from your friends, let them know where you are going and who you are with.

Drink responsibly and know your limits. Don’t accept drinks from people who you don’t know or trust and never leave your drink unattended. If you have left your drink alone, get a new one. Always watch your drink being prepared. At parties, stick to drinks you got or prepared yourself instead of common open containers like punch bowls.

Watch out for your friends. If a friend seems out of it, is way too intoxicated for the amount of alcohol they’ve had, or is acting out of character, get him or her to a safe place. If you suspect that you or a friend has been drugged, call 911. Be explicit with doctors so they can administer the correct tests.

Be aware of your surroundings. Whether you’re walking home from the library or at a party be mindful of potential risks. Get to know your campus and learn a well-lit route back to your dorm or place of residence. Think of a safe exit strategy. Are there people around who might be able to help you? Is there an emergency phone nearby?

“Jeans for Justice” Jeans Needed!

"Jeans for Justice" is a mobile art display sponsored by S.A.F.E., Inc. and created by residents of northeast Mississippi. The purpose is to express feeling about violence and to let people know that that we as citizens of northeast Mississippi do not condone behavior that leads to or encourages any kind of violence, abuse, or assault.

Donate Jeans or Art Supplies: Making art can be expensive, so if you have an extra pair of jeans, a damaged pair of jeans that are not able to be worn, or extra art supplies (paint, brushes, hot glue, appliqués, ribbons, etc.) we could really use them! There is currently a drop box at the Lee county Library.

Visit Jeans for Justice Displays: Itawamba County Library, DHS and Community Development Council host displays  in August, New Albany Library in September and the Belmont Library in October. If you would like to host a display or if you know of a place where you would like to see the jeans let us know!

Verizon Donation For Victims and Survivors of Domestic Violence

Photo by Christy Knapp

Mary Katherine Spencer from S.A.F.E., Inc. and the staff of the the new Oxford, Mississippi Verizon Store at their ribbon cutting ceremony July 22, 2011. Verizon makes a donation to help eliminate domestic violence and serve victims each time they open a new corporate location. Follow the link below to learn about HopeLine®, Verizon’s community service project that turns no-longer used cell phones into support for domestic violence victims and survivors.


Photo by Christy Knapp


Mary Katherine Spencer from S.A.F.E., Inc., and Lori Anne Singleton, District Manager of Retail Sales at Verizon, holding a one thousand dollar donation presented to S.A.F.E., Inc. as a part of their community project HopeLine® to end domestic violence. In then background, you will see a HopeLine box where no-longer used cell phones can be turned into into support for domestic violence victims and survivors.

CLICK HERE to learn about HopeLine®,

Verizon’s community service project !

United Way To Give Away School Supplies

United Way to give away school supplies
by Carlie Kollath/NEMS Daily Journal
TUPELO – The United Way of Northeast Mississippi is skipping a formal campaign kickoff and is doing a back-to-school event instead.

Last year, Leigh Anne Tuohy, the real-life mom in the movie “The Blind Side,” headlined the group’s kickoff event. The event usually has been combined with a day of community volunteering.

The United Way opted to change directions.

“Knowing how the economy is and how many people are hurting, we felt like there would be so many people out there with a need for getting back to school,” said Melinda Tidwell, the group’s executive director.

The United Way hopes to collect supplies for 4,000 kindergarten through sixth-grade students. It needs donations of school supplies, backpacks, hand sanitizer, socks and underwear.

Donations will be collected July 15 in Fairpark from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Supplies will be given away July 30 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the BancorpSouth Arena.

The fair also will have immunizations, haircuts, vision screenings and hearing screenings.

Children need to be preregistered to get supplies. Register by calling (662) 841-9133 or go to unitedwaynems.org.

The United Way also needs volunteers to sort donations and to work the fair. To volunteer, call (662) 841-9133 and ask for Lacy Carr.

5 Things You & Your Kids Can Do Online This Summer

Sign up for an exciting virtual world like Woogi World, Club Penguin, or Disney’s Pixie Hollow. Create your own character and explore these digital playgrounds with your child.

Join the global, outdoor treasure-hunting game of Geocaching. You can use a GPS device or smartphone to find hidden caches all over the world.

Play an educational game. Test your geography smarts with the Traveler IQ Challenge or learn about granulocytes with Immune System Defender

Take a virtual trip! Explore museums from around the world at Google’s Art Project or take a virtual stroll through an ancient Roman villa

Your kids may be out of school, but NetSmartz is still in session! Check out NetSmartzKids for awesome monthly activities and projects.

June is National Internet Safety Month; Educate Yourself and Your Kids

The Internet offers an array of entertainment and educational resources for children but also presents some risks.

The S.A.F.E. Inc. and the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) are committed to helping all audiences — from kids to parents and guardians to law-enforcement officers and educators — learn the aspects of Internet safety.

You can’t watch kids every minute, but you can use strategies to help them benefit from the Internet and avoid its risks.

S.A.F.E., Inc. urges you to do one of the single most important things to promote safety — talk to kids about the rewards and risks of Internet use.

Learn more here!

Dangerous Messages

Like the brutal attack against CBS’ Laura Logan, the alleged sexual assault against a housekeeper at New York City’s toney Sofitel Hotel has provided a window to our society’s attitudes toward women, wealth, privilege and power. It’s a sad but important reminder that we have a lot of work still to do to eliminate stereotypes, and ensure our culture doesn’t sanction abuse of any kind. Read the rest of this article at Futures Without Violence.