Manatee Glens holds sexual awareness rally April 1

March 25, 2014 

Manatee Glens holds sexual awareness rally April 1

BRADENTON -- A Sexual Awareness Day Rally starts at 2:30 p.m. April 1 at Manatee Glens, 383 Sixth Ave. W., Bradenton. Lauren Book, a sexual abuse survivor and founder of Laurenskids.org, will be speaking at the event during a stopover in Bradenton as part of her 1,500-mile annual walk from Key West to Tallahassee.

"This is the third time she has come to our area," said Cathy Wilson, director of children's services and community programs at Manatee Glens. For the past two years, Wilson has accompanied Book in the last part of her walk up the Capitol steps in Tallahassee to raise awareness in the Florida Legislature about sexual violence and what's needed to help and protect victims.

Book is the author of "Memoir: It's OK to Tell," the story of her childhood sexual abuse by her nanny that went on for six years. Lauraskids.org features information about a curriculum designed for children about sexual abuse and sexual violence.

The public is invited to join a pre-rally walk starting at 1:30 p.m. in the parking lot of Chick-Fil-A, 4573 14th St. W., Bradenton, and ending at Manatee Glens. A shuttle will be available at Manatee Glens at 12:30 p.m. to transport walkers to Chick-Fil-A and avoid parking problems.

In addition to speakers, the rally will feature survivors' testimonies, an art exhibit by survivors, community information tables and giveaways. For information, call 941-782-4150.

Group holds last 'Sing Along' concert

SARASOTA -- The "Sing Along" group at the Center for Building Hope will be performing a final concert from 2:45 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. April 8. The concert will feature a medley of Broadway tunes, folk songs and familiar favorites, and the concert audience will be encouraged to join in.

The group started in January, led by Lee Dougherty Ross, and the concert will be its seasonal wrap-up. The concept of having a singing group for cancer patients and people affected by cancer is part of the Center for Building Hope's mind-body approach for offering support.

The concert is free and the public is invited. The Center for Building Hope is at 5481 Communications Parkway, Sarasota. For more information, call 941-921-5539.

Bradenton YMCA offers pool safety class

BRADENTON -- A pool safety class for learning how to rescue someone in danger of drowning will be held from 4:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. April 11 at the YMCA Bradenton Branch, 3805 59th St. W. Bradenton.

The session is the American Red Cross Water Rescue Certification class and also includes an introduction to CPR. Grandparents, parents, babysitters and siblings are encouraged to join.

"You don't need to be strong, you just need to know what to do," said Jacqueline McMahon, water aerobics program manager at the Bradenton Y.

The class will focus on prevention and how to avoid situations where a child can be in danger. Participants in the class must be comfortable in chest-deep water but it isn't necessary to know how to swim. Cost is $30 for Y members and $50 for nonmembers.

Register online at www.manateeymca.org or in person at the branch. For information, call 941-792-7484.

Susan Hemmingway, Herald health correspondent, can be reached at shemmingway@hotmail.com.

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