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The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued a $1.245M grant to the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault for its nationally recognized project Prevention Connection. The project utilizes innovative e-learning technologies to conduct interactive trainings and discussion forums on interpersonal violence and sexual violence, and is designed to strengthen the technical skills of participants using an online community of practice model (COP).
The $415K/year grant continues an effort that has been funded since 2005, and ensures that Prevention Connection will continue until at least 2012. “This is an investment in how we prevent sexual violence nationwide” says Executive Director, Suzanne Brown-McBride. “By bringing together prevention practitioners, we can strengthen existing efforts that states, campuses and communities have underway as well as building new pathways to successful, evidence based prevention models.”
The project has had more than 6,000 participants in over 35 web conferences, produces podcasts and online presentations, maintains email groups and has tapped into social media by way of Twitter and Facebook. Project Director, David Lee, says the ‘Community of Practice’ extends far and wide: “We have professionals in all 50 states, territories, and many countries like Australia, Canada, Scotland. We’re also working in partnership with National Sexual Violence Resource Center and VAWnet and we’ve been able to build a vibrant, dynamic community among professionals in our field. Our goal is to provide participants with an opportunity to exchange ideas, share resources and discuss emerging strategies and issues to primary prevention.”