Football’s Call to Action
By Stephen St. Vincent
Monday was a hard day for football fans. Between the publication of the security footage showing former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice beating his then-fiancée into unconsciousness and the NCAA’s surprising decision to rescind the penalties that it had imposed on Penn State in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky child sexual abuse scandal, it’s fair to say that everyone who follows the sport was left with mixed emotions at best.
It’s not YIP’s place to comment on whether the NFL’s handling of the issue of domestic violence is right or wrong; nor is it our place, as an organization, to comment on whether the NCAA was right in reversing its sanctions against Penn State. There are plenty of arguments to be had about any number of points, and reasonable people can disagree about many of them.
But there are two points that are not in dispute: (1) domestic violence is abhorrent, it needs to be stopped, and its victims need all the help we can give them; and (2) child abuse is abhorrent, it needs to be stopped, and its victims need all the help we can give them.
Please take Monday as a call to action. There are many great organizations in and around Philadelphia that do amazing work in the fields of domestic violence and child abuse. A handful of them are listed below. If you want to make a difference, you could try boycotting the NFL or NCAA football. But if you want to change a victim’s life, you should donate to or volunteer for these organizations. This list is far from exhaustive, which just shows you how many opportunities you have to do the one thing we hope all of you will do: get involved.
Domestic violence organizations:
- Anti-Violence Partnership of Philadelphia
- Lutheran Settlement House
- Women Against Abuse
- Women In Transition
- Women Organized Against Rape (WOAR)
- Women’s Law Project
Child abuse/child welfare organizations:
- Center for Grieving Children
- Children’s Crisis Treatment Center (CCTC)
- Children’s Services, Inc.
- Joseph J. Peters Institute (JJPI)
- National Adoption Center
- Public Citizens for Children and Youth (PCCY)
- Philadelphia Children’s Alliance (PCA)