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PSU Berks hosts fundraiser for child sex abuse victims

By Dwayne Parker, Reporter, DParker@wfmz.com
Published On: Dec 06 2011 06:00:00 PM CST
Updated On: Dec 07 2011 06:54:38 PM CST

"We Care" was the motto on the campus of Penn State Berks, Wednesday, as hundreds gathered to raise awareness against child sex abuse.

SPRING TWP., Pa. -

"We Care" was the motto on the campus of Penn State Berks, Wednesday, as hundreds gathered to raise awareness against child sex abuse.

In light of the sex scandal surrounding former Penn State coach, Jerry Sandusky, students organized a fundraiser.

"Our hearts just broke for the victims who were the ones most affected by this," said Penn State senior, Ashton Tupper.

"We wanted to do something that showed that the student body cared about what was happening, cared about humanity," said another Penn State senior, Britany Maack.

The money raised will be donated to the Children's Alliance Center of Berks County.

The non-profit works with sexually abused children.

Alliance Vice President, April Reed-Schmehl, said last year the organization handled 250 cases. This year, she said the number of cases has already reached 255.

Officials said the cases are split evenly between Reading and the Berks County suburbs.

"It's pretty much split down the middle 50/50. It's very prevalent. People don't want to talk about it. It's ugly. It's nasty," said Reed-Schmehl. "But they have to understand that it happens."

And as students educated themselves on how to recognize the signs child sexual abuse, they also added that they refuse to let the scandal define their university.

"And we're so much more than just one person, no matter who that person is," said Larry Wesner, Student Government President.

Penn State students were hoping to raise $2,000. Donations can be sent to the Children's Alliance Center of Berks County.

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