Monday, November 30, 2009

Is your organization looking to enhance your online presence?

If it's true that the company you keep is an indication of your character then we are rocking baby! We hope by now you know that is our incredible fall tour title sponsor. This socially conscious company cares about students, your organizational success and providing the best web sites and hosting on the market, hands down. You might think they would charge through the roof for such service but they don't. They want to be within reach of their audience and we love that. If you or your organization is looking to create an online presence or you want to amp up what you already have please reach out to our friends at Celect to learn more about all they have to offer. We think you'll be impressed with what you find. Their offerings are excellent, customer service is spectacular and they are passionate about making a difference. Who could ask for anything more? Oh how about they help your two soul sisters reach countless more students, to talk about "IT". Celect, if lovin' you is wrong we don't want to be right.

Celect will empower your organization with the tools you need to manage, grow, and succeed.

Celect is home to over 1,300 national and local fraternities, sororities, student organizations, and alumni groups. Within these groups, there are hundreds of thousands of members that use Celect to strengthen their connection to the organization and other members. Websites that utilize Celect are also integrated with Facebook through two of the top Greek applications, which Celect developed, called The Greek Community and Greek Family Tree. By combining Celect with Facebook applications, your members are free to move between their individual and organizational networks with just a click – further cementing ties to your organization.

Enhance Your Presence

Finding the right online website management and networking tool allows your organization to enhance its community presence and public outreach. Sharing news, policies, and calendars, coordinating fundraisers and donation campaigns, managing member profiles, and sharing photos and videos online will help centralize and promote your organization’s values, goals, and purpose. Click here to see a full list of the features, tools and benefits that Celect offers.

Celect will help you build the public image that is right for you as well as assist in the management your organization’s day-to-day activity. There is no need to have a tech-savvy “administrator” who controls your website. The Celect platform allows organizations to assign different permission levels to different types of members, which promotes participation.

Connect, Reconnect and Network

Celect realizes that many smaller or local groups are often part of a larger organization. Our online organizational networking system can help bring your members, sub-organizations, and national/parent organization together, more often and more effectively. With features that create unlimited groups, individual members can connect with other groups within the organization or with other individual members, and vice versa.

Member Management and Recruitment

Celect is designed to help you reach out to your members, build effective channels of communication and retain their membership. The Celect platform can also help recruit new members with special tools designed to focus on recruitment efforts and building membership – allowing your organization to better target potential new members and follow-through with specific recruitment communications.

To learn how Celect can help your College, Greek, or Alumni Group create a web presence and manage its day-to-day member activity, call 1-888-88CELECT, or e-mail

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Unite for Change Seeks Amazing Student Leader

Spring 2010 Opportunity: Program Development Intern

Unite for Change is currently working on a ground breaking outreach project for campus communities across Florida. We are seeking a driven, visionary thinker to assist in developing this revolutionary initiative that will unite college students and communities to promote sexual assault awareness, healthy sexuality and sexual health. This is a chance to gain real experience in organizational outreach and leadership development while addressing sexual violence.

Qualified applicants must be a leader within their college community and be comfortable working with various groups such as Res Life, First Year Experience, Student Government, Greek Life, and Athletics from both their home campus and campuses across the state of Florida. Candidates must have strong communication skills both oral and written and have previously held or currently holding a leadership position on campus.

The ideal candidate will be an articulate, creative and organized self starter who is knowledgeable in sexual health and sexual violence reduction or possesses the skills and has an interest in learning about the issue(s).

This is a part-time telecommuting intern position. Start date is January 2010 and will conclude in May 2010. Stipend will be paid upon completion of internship. Prefer applicants within the state of Florida but not required. If desired, we will work with the student and university to ensure college credit is provided for the internship.

Please submit your resume and cover letter no later than 12/15 to with subject line: Intern Resume.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Sexual Health Report Card

The Trojan Sexual Health Report Card started four years ago with the concern of some scary statistics. As Bruce Tetreault, a group project manager for Trojan said… “Only one in three sex acts in singles uses a condom, there are 19 million new sexually transmitted infections every year and over 700,000 unplanned pregnancies under the age of 20 every year in the United States. That drove us to spark conversation and increase awareness of the state of sexual health awareness in America and by doing the Report Card we are able to do that and increase availability of information and resources.”

Kudos to Trojan for taking action and highlighting college campuses for promoting sexual health!

Congrats to the University of South Carolina for ranking #1!

Make your sexual health a priority. Learn how to get down with sexual empowerment here.

The annual study analyzed 141 schools in the major NCAA conferences, grading them on a wide array of factors, including health center hours of operation, condom availability, HIV testing costs and the availability of anonymous advice. Scores are tallied similar to grade point average, with 4.0 being the best, and 0.0 the worst.

Top 10 Best Schools for Sexual Health

1. University of South Carolina (3.43 Sexual GPA)

2. Stanford University (3.40 Sexual GPA)

3. University of Connecticut (3.38 Sexual GPA)

4. Columbia University (3.24 Sexual GPA)

5. Florida Atlantic University (3.23 Sexual GPA)

6. University of Georgia (3.21 Sexual GPA)

7. Michigan State University (3.17 Sexual GPA)

8. Cornell University (3.17 Sexual GPA)

9. Brown University (3.15 Sexual GPA)

10. Duke University (3.15 Sexual GPA)

The 10 Worst Schools for Sexual Health

1. DePaul University (0.62 Sexual GPA)

2. St. John’s University (1.24 Sexual GPA)

3. Providence College (1.37 Sexual GPA)

4. Baylor University (1.54 Sexual GPA)

5. Bringham Young University (1.57 Sexual GPA)

6. Arkansas State University (1.58 Sexual GPA)

7. University of Louisiana at Lafayette (1.63 Sexual GPA)

8. Louisiana Tech University (1.64 Sexual GPA)

9. Seton Hall University (1.71 Sexual GPA)

10. Troy State University (1.71 Sexual GPA)

USC tops sexual health rankings
Availability of information, testing help Carolina excel

By Ellen Meder
Assistant Mix Editor
Published: Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Everyone comes to college for education but, according to a study released Tuesday, the University of South Carolina is currently leading the nation in a non-academic field of education: sexual health.

USC was ranked No. 1 out of 141 NCAA colleges and universities nationwide for availability of sexual health information and resources according to the fourth annual Trojan Sexual Health Report Card. Never having slipped below No. 11, South Carolina embodied many of the 13 points of criterion for an overall 3.43 sexual health GPA.

Trojan Brand Condoms has been in the contraception business for over 90 years, according to Bruce Tetreault, a group project manager for Trojan, and aligns its business objectives with public health needs.

“Four years ago we got some really sobering statistics about the state of sexual health in America,” Tetreault said. “Only one in three sex acts in singles uses a condom, there are 19 million new sexually transmitted infections every year and over 700,000 unplanned pregnancies under the age of 20 every year in the United States. That drove us to spark conversation and increase awareness of the state of sexual health awareness in America and by doing the Report Card we are able to do that and increase availability of information and resources.”

Trojan enlisted Sperling’s BestPlaces, a Portland, Or. data analysis company, to measure both the access and availability of information and resources. Sperling’s BestPlaces graded universities based on data from campus health centers, student polls and other readily available information like school Web sites. Cost of and access to contraception, HIV testing Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI) testing as well as outreach and peer groups factored in to the grading. Amount of sexual activity and STI rates were not included in the study because such information is difficult to accurately obtain said company president Bert Sperling. With a Facebook campaign targeting each school, Sperling’s BestPlaces ran advertisements for questionnaires that asked students five question: Would you consider contacting the health center for a sexual health issue? Does the health center do a good job? Are the services complete? Is he staff trustworthy? And, is there room for improvement? Over 6,000 students responded nationally, with 89 USC responses.

“In those scores, USC received one of the very highest scores in student responses,” Sperling said. “It has a very good Web site and they have student peer groups, they have programs for assault and sexual harassment awareness, and outreach and lecture programs are all top notch. In many areas very excellent.”

Thompson Student Health Center helped in many ways, including everything from free Pap smear testing and free condoms to informative pamphlets. The Sexual Health & Violence Prevention’s (SH&VP) services is where USC especially excelled, offering healthy relationship services, STI information, sexual assault and stalking prevention and lots of campus outreach.

“Our overall goal is seeing students have healthy relationships, including partners, roommates and friendships,” said Ryan Wilson, the Sexual Health Program Coordinator at SH&VP. “My focus is just the sexual health piece of that whole.”

With the University 101 outreach program, SH&VP representatives go class to class with a “What your peers never told you about sex” presentation that gives students full information on both safe sex and abstinence and sparks discussion about personal beliefs.

“We ask students to decide on their own sexual health, to do make those decisions on their own timeline, when they’re ready,” Wilson said.

Additionally, SH&VP spends a lot of time researching student sexual health and holds events like the Nov. 17 World AIDS Day forum, as well as Greene Street condom handouts throughout the year and the Project Condom fashion show in the spring. The branch of the health center also helps out the student sexual health group, Share, in their dissemination of information.

“What we’re doing is on target from the research I’m reading about how peers can help other peers with a lot of this,” Wilson said. “We all need to make responsible decisions and then help others as well. That is one way we can improve, is to take care of each other in every area.”

Kat King, a third-year visual communication student and the president of Share, agreed that students listen more to people like themselves.

“I’m really thrilled about the honor,” King said. “I think it’s really the visibility of our peers and the amazing research of the SH&VP office that got us here.”

Share has about 40 undergraduate members, and is holding many events this month to mark Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and participates with SH&VP in World AIDS Day activities, Safe Spring Break Week, Project Condom, Sexual Assault Awareness Month, Stalking Awareness Day and Homophobia Awareness week.

“I’m really proud of the work we’ve done and definitely feel that in certain areas we are leading the way,” Wilson said.

The healthy discussion of formerly taboo topics at USC is not an isolated occurrence, though.

“Now students are asking how they can help their schools improve the availability of this information and we’ve really seen student empowerment happening,” Tetreault said. “For us, that’s been the biggest change and the most gratifying.”

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Safety Aboard Cruise Ships

We have been following the work of International Cruise Victims and recently had the pleasure of meeting Laurie Dishman and Caitlin Burke with ICV to learn more about the organization and their work. To say we were impressed is an understatement. These ladies are passionate, driven and down right spunky so we were not at all suprised to learn that some of their hard work is paying off in a big way. This week the Matsui Cruise Safety Bill passed in the House of Representatives. Congratulations! This is a huge.

You can read the full press release below. To learn more about safety on cruise ships or to get involved with the ICV visit-

Another great day for ICV and future victims of crimes on Cruise ships
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
(202) 225-7163
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES PASSES MATSUI CRUISE SAFETY BILLStand-Alone Legislation Will Protect Americans Aboard Cruise Ships

WASHINGTON, DC - Today, Congresswoman Doris O. Matsui (D-CA) joined with hercolleagues in the House of Representatives to pass H.R. 3360, the CruiseVessel Security and Safety Act of 2009 by a bipartisan vote of 416-4.Introduced by Representative Matsui earlier this year, the legislation is acritical and common-sense fix which will provide safety and security toAmericans who go on cruise vacations without realizing they are notprotected under U.S. laws when they leave its territorial waters.

"Unfortunately, the status quo has allowed cruise ships to operate underforeign flags of convenience - but leaving our territorial waters does notmean that cruise ships should be allowed to operate without basic laws thatprotect American citizens," Matsui said today on the House floor duringconsideration of her legislation. "Over the past several years, I have metwith far too many victims and their families who have experienced tragedy onthe high seas, only to be left to fend for themselves. It has becomeincreasingly apparent that this landmark legislation is both urgent andnecessary."

Rep. Matsui was contacted regarding the need for increased protections forAmericans on cruise ships in 2006, when her constituent, Laurie Dishman,wrote to her for help. Ms. Dishman was the victim of a sexual assault whileon a cruise vacation, and was given no assistance by the cruise line inproperly securing evidence of the assault, identifying her attacker, orprosecuting the crime once back on shore. Devastated, she reached out toCongresswoman Matsui for help. Matsui immediately began working on thislegislation and held multiple hearings with the support of Transportationand Infrastructure Committee Chairman Jim Oberstar (D-MN) and Chairman ofthe Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Elijah Cummings(D-MD), to bring the reality of what was happening on these ships to light."

Unfortunately, incidences of sexual attacks, missing persons and otherserious crimes have continued to be reported on board cruise ships in recentyears, despite increased media and Congressional attention on this issue,"stated Matsui. "The passage of my Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Actwill not only help recent victims of cruise crimes and offer them enhancedprotection, but will help from preventing further crimes from happening. Wecannot sit back and witness these violent and reprehensible acts tocontinue."

Matsui's legislation will require the cruise industry to comply with anumber of security provisions including specific rail heights, peep holes,warning devices, and cabin security measures. Additionally, the billnecessitates that vessels are equipped with a video surveillance system toassist in documenting and prosecuting crimes, and requires vessels tomaintain a log book to record reports on specified complaints. Finally, thelaw will mandate cruise vessel personnel to contact both the Federal Bureauof Investigations (FBI) and the United States Coast Guard as soon as a crimeinvolving homicide, suspicious deaths, missing U.S. nationals, kidnapping,assault, and other serious occurrences are reported.

Passage of this legislation is in addition to the inclusion of the CruiseVessel Security and Safety Act of 2009 in the Coast Guard ReauthorizationAct f 2010 recently passed by the House of Representatives. CongresswomanMatsui and her colleagues are hopeful that the Senate will soon take upconsideration of companion legislation introduced by Senator John Kerry(D-MA) that was passed unanimously by the Senate Commerce, Science andTransportation Committee this summer, and be sent to the President as soon as possible.
# # #

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Our friends at JUST IN CASE would like to know…

What will you be doing for World AIDS Day 2009?

Let JUST IN CASE® Intimacy Compacts be a part of the Celebration of Education, and a valuable tool of prevention.We are offering extraordinary discounts to Non-Profit agencies across the US through December 31, 2009. Don’t miss this fantastic opportunity!

Give your clients and donors a valuable tool to promote disease prevention and further sexual health education. Statistics and education are vital to understanding the need for change in behavior. TREND can take the information and put it into action, The JUST IN CASE® Intimacy Compacts are a trend that will have a direct and lasting positive impact on behavior and just might save a life. The JUST IN CASE® Intimacy Compacts will be utilized by clients and donors far beyond other hand-outs that may be read and thrown away.

Please contact Rachael for further information!


WORLD AIDS DAY 2009: Universal Access and Human Rights

The theme for World AIDS Day 2009 is 'Universal Access and Human Rights'. Global leaders have pledged to work towards universal access to HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care, recognising these as fundamental human rights. Valuable progress has been made in increasing access to HIV/AIDS services, yet greater commitment is needed around the world if the goal of universal access is to be achieved. Millions of people continue to be infected with HIV every year. In low- and middle-income countries, less than half of those in need of antiretroviral therapy are receiving it, and too many do not have access to adequate care services.

The protection of human rights is fundamental to combating the global HIV and AIDS epidemic. Violations against human rights fuel the spread of HIV, putting marginalised groups, such as injecting drug users and sex workers, at a higher risk of HIV infection. By promoting individual human rights, new infections can be prevented and people who have HIV can live free from discrimination.

World AIDS Day provides an opportunity for all of us - individuals, communities and political leaders - to take action and ensure that human rights are protected and global targets for HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care are met.

Universal Access and Human Rights - The - I AM theme

The World AIDS Campaign arrived at the selection of the theme Universal Access and Human Rights after close consultation with representatives of various constituencies, communications and media representatives of partner organizations, and friends of the World AIDS Campaign.

Why I AM?

Understanding HIV and AIDS from a human rights perspective can be difficult. Human rights are often misunderstood and can sometimes be seen as abstract ideals with not much practical relevance for real people. The slogans for the World AIDS Day materials were designed to bridge that gap and underscore the importance of awareness of Human Rights.

Among the key slogans adopted:

I am accepted.

I am safe.

I am getting treatment.

I am well

I am living my rights.

Everyone deserves to live their rights

Right to Live

Right to Health

Access for all to HIV prevention treatment care and support is a critical part of human rights.

The aim was to provide concise, informative texts designed to illustrate the relationship between Human Rights and Universal Access.

Supporting materials are now available in campaigning packages (four posters and two post cards) printed in English, Spanish, French and Russian and are available on the World AIDS Campaign website. Arabic, Mandarin, Hindi and Portuguese versions are also available to download from the website.
To find out more about how you can get involved in your community please visit

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Determined to make a difference!

Often news outlets only report about the issues related to sexual assault when tragedy strikes but in this case renowned columnist for the St. Petersburg Times Ernest Hooper was simply inspired by Sabrina, our friend and social outreach intern who is driven by the moniker determined to make a difference.

When we decided to start our internship program we had no idea how great its impact would be on us. We hoped to teach but what we have been taught is far greater. Sabrina Sadler, our current intern has inspired us more than she could ever know. We are grateful for the impact her commitment to ending and addressing sexual violence has had on Unite for Change. She is a visionary rock star and at our staff retreat this week she helped us guide the future of Unite for Change, offering ideas and direction. We can’t wait to introduce Sabrina to some of our allies at the 2009 Sexual Assault in our Schools conference in Orlando this weekend.

In the article Ernest Hooper beautifully outlined how we all make choices, difficult choices but what we do with the deck we are dealt is what defines who we are and what we are capable of doing. Sabrina reminds all of us that we can and will make a difference. You just have to be willing to believe in yourself and others.

After meeting with Sabrina, Ernest Hooper said it best, "Anyone with a heart, anyone who cares about humanity, anyone who wants to end sexual assault and promote sexual empowerment should learn about Unite For Change".

We hope you too feel the same way.

Please follow the link to read the article and leave a comment, thank you again to the Times for covering such an important issue.

Unite for Change- fights sex abuse

Ernest Hooper, Metro Columnist

In Print: Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

November’s Featured Program for Change

The University of Maine Athletes for Sexual Responsibility

College athletes struggle with a number of sexuality issues ranging from pregnancy prevention, sexually transmitted disease prevention, dating dilemmas, communication problems, date rape and gang rape. The University of Maine is addressing these serious national problems through a unique peer education program that shows athletes as more than role models for physical strength, agility and stamina, but also as role models for appropriate social and sexual behavior. This program has become a model for colleges and universities across the country.

The semester long program trains student-athletes to present a variety of workshops including: "Rape Awareness," "Smart Sex" and "Drinking & Dating." It uses athletes as role models and actors who portray characters in damaging or potentially harmful sexual situations who then engage the audience to explore positive alternatives. The current troupe includes male and female student-athletes, representing the various intercollegiate sports at the University of Maine.

Feeling inspired? If you would like more information about Athletes for Sexual Responsibility or want to find out how to join a Program for Change on your campus, enhance your current mission or start a new campaign/ organization in your community please contact us at

We are currently accepting nominations for Programs for Change. Please contact Sabrina Sadler at for more information.

Hopeful, Determined and Focused,

The Unite for Change Team

Monday, November 02, 2009

Violence Against Women on Television: Are you desensitized?

Sabrina Sadler, Social Outreach Intern

What are you watching on Television?

As the years go by more and more violence appears on T.V. Even movie ratings have changed from previous years. As each year passes our tolerance in accepting profanity, violence, female victimization and nudity seems to increase.
The article below takes a look into violence against females on television, how It has changed between 2004 through 2009.
Are you surprised?

Women in Peril: PTC Report Finds Increase in Violence Against Females on Television

LOS ANGELES (October 28, 2009)

In a new special report, the Parents Television Council® found that storylines depicting violence against females are increasing and being shown more graphically and in ways that have not been seen in the history of television.

The PTC’s report, Women in Peril: A Look at TV’s Disturbing New Storyline Trend, examined fatal and nonfatal female victimizations on prime time broadcast television and found that there was a significant increase in all forms of female victimization storylines; an increase in the depiction of teen girls as victims; an increase in the use of female victimization as a punch line in comedy series; and an increase in the depiction of intimate partner violence.

“Our new research points to a disturbing trend: by depicting violence against women with increasing frequency, or as a trivial, even humorous matter, the broadcast networks may ultimately be contributing to a desensitized atmosphere in which people view aggression and violence directed at women as normative, even acceptable,” said PTC President Tim Winter.

“Just last week, actresses like Nicole Kidman testified before the Congress that Hollywood probably has contributed to violence against women by portraying them as weak sex objects. We all must pay attention to the fact that this is a problem in our society. The fact is that children are influenced by what they see on TV and that certainly includes media violence,” said PTC Director of Communications and Public Education Melissa Henson.

The study compares the qualitative and quantitative differences in the treatments of violence against women on prime time broadcast television between 2004 and 2009. PTC analysts examined all primetime programming (excluding sports and news programs) on the major broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC)* during the February and May 2004 and 2009 sweeps periods for a total of 209.5 hours of programming.

Major Findings

1. Incidents of violence against women and teenage girls are increasing on television at rates that far exceed the overall increases in violence on television. Violence, irrespective of gender, on television increased only 2% from 2004 to 2009, while incidents of violence against women increased 120% during that same period.

• The most frequent type of violence against women on television was beating (29%), followed by credible threats of violence (18%), shooting (11%), rape (8%), stabbing (6%), and torture (2%). Violence against women resulted in death 19% of the time.

• Violence towards women or the graphic consequences of violence tends overwhelmingly to be depicted (92%) rather than implied (5%) or described (3%).

2. Every network but ABC demonstrated a significant increase in the number of storylines that included violence against women between 2004 and 2009.

3. Although female victims were primarily of adult age, collectively, there was a 400% increase in the depiction of teen girls as victims across all networks from 2004 to 2009.

4. Fox stood out for using violence against women as a punch line in its comedies -- in particular Family Guy and American Dad -- trivializing the gravity of the issue of violence against women.

5. From 2004 to 2009 there was an 81% increase in incidences of intimate partner violence on television.

“Our study today serves as a clarion call to all Americans about a critical issue with dire consequences. We are calling on television producers and network executives, members of the advertising community, elected representatives and appointed government officials, and most importantly, the viewing public, to stand up against this disturbing trend. In a country where more than 60% of children have been exposed to violence in their daily lives, according to recent research by Justice Department, we must take the utmost care not to normalize violent behavior – especially violence against women – through our television programming,” Winter added.

To read at the full report and view video clips from the study, visit: