Students help spread abuse prevention message

By Lauren Payne - bio | email feedback

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The Northeast Arkansas Children's Advocacy Center brings together law enforcement, prosecutors, social workers, and medical and mental healthcare professionals to respond to children with claims of sexual and physical abuse.

The message of awareness and abuse prevention is being spread with the help of other kids.

About one dozen Nettleton middle schoolers are showing off their acting skills.

The students are participating in a public service announcement for the Northeast Arkansas Children's Advocacy Center.

The goal is to raise awareness and help prevent child abuse.  The PSA is part of a class project for ASU student Demario Davis.

"Everyone in class knew that this one would be the toughest one to tackle, so we kind of just accepted the challenge," said Davis.

This is one of three PSA's his group is doing as part of their entire project for the center.

"It's really rough to see and it's a reality that must be dealt with," said Davis.

"First say 'no' then tell someone and so we have all the kids with their cell phones screaming out that message," said Director of the Northeast Arkansas Children's Advocacy Center, Susie Cover.

A message Cover says is two-fold.

"We're trying to reach kids with that message and also if parents hear the PSA encourage them to talk to kids about that message," said Cover.

Cover says she hopes this message will help kids protect themselves, and ultimately get those who are hurting them away from them.

"A child yelling 'no' and running to tell someone may just end it and do the trick," said Cover.

For ASU student Demario Davis, this school project has turned into so much more.

"It's impacted me greatly and I'll try to use some of the stuff I learned and try to apply it as I go farther in life," said Davis.

Cover says they will upload all of the PSA's to the center's website and distribute them to local and regional television stations.  Cover says the group also made a dvd describing what the center does and made two other PSA's.  She says she can now take those  to speaking events or fundraisers to help people understand what exactly the Northeast Arkansas Children's Advocacy Center does.

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