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New Program/Website Targets Jewish Children, Teens, and Adults Suffering from the Impact of Childhood Maltreatment
Date:6/3/2008

BALTIMORE, June 3 /PRNewswire/ -- A new website (http://www.shofarcoalition.org) provides background on the issue of physical, sexual, and emotional abuse and neglect of Jewish children. It helps identify, advocate for, respond to, and provide specialized services for children, adolescents, and adults who are suffering from the impact of child maltreatment. Although the Shofar Coalition is a Baltimore-based group, the information on the website is applicable to any Jewish community.

"Nobody really wants to face the fact that physical, sexual, or emotional abuse could be happening in our families, in our schools, in our synagogues, in our community, and that's really the biggest issue -- helping people understand that putting it on a shelf and ignoring it doesn't make it go away," said Esther Giller, president and director of the nonprofit Sidran Traumatic Stress Institute of Baltimore.

Sidran Institute convened the Shofar Coalition, a collaborative of 31 Jewish and secular organizations to address the effects of abuse and family dysfunction in the Jewish community. "Last year, revelations about rabbinical abuse came up in the local Jewish newspaper and in other cities as well. Increased awareness of these problems dovetailed with Sidran's objective from the very beginning," Giller said. The name Shofar was chosen as a symbol of a community-wide Call to Action to recognize and address the traumatic effects of abuse in the Jewish community, and especially on Jewish children and adolescents.

The new website also provides resources and links, survivor testimony, and a connection to the Sidran Help Desk (help@sidran.org), which provides, at no cost, general information about trauma, treatment resources and names of individual therapists nationwide, reading recommendations, and individualized self-advocacy education for survivors of trauma.

The Shofar Coalition is made up of serv
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SOURCE Sidran Traumatic Stress Institute
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