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Community Events-General

Abuse Survivor To Speak At YWCA Event March 21, 2018

Matthew Sandusky, the adopted son of notorious sex offender Jerry Sandusky, will speak at a program about childhood sexual abuse hosted by YWCA Lancaster at 7 p.m. on Friday, April 6, in Steinman Hall at the Ware Center, 42 N. Prince St., Lancaster.

Matthew was abused by his adoptive father from ages 8 to 17, and he is now working to turn his traumatic personal experience into a mechanism to prevent childhood sexual abuse and to help other survivors heal. During the program, Matthew will share his story in order to empower the audience with knowledge about the grooming process used by abusers as well as telltale signs of abuse and those being abused.

"Hearing Matthew's powerful story as a victim survivor of childhood sexual abuse and how he has continued to live his life aligns well to the work we do at YWCA Lancaster," said Lisa Cameron, director of empowerment services at YWCA Lancaster. "Like many victim survivors, he is an inspiration and advocate to those struggling with abuse. We want others to know that there is a place in our community that can provide help and assistance."

Matthew is the founder and executive director of Peaceful Hearts Foundation, which raises awareness around child sexual abuse in local communities, supports the lifesaving work of children's advocacy and sexual-assault treatment centers, and advocates for legislative changes. Matthew works with researchers, clinicians, the media, politicians, social workers, and child-protection professionals to raise awareness and improve the quality and availability of services to survivors nationwide.

Tickets are required to attend the program, and proceeds will benefit the Sexual Assault Prevention and Counseling Center (SAPCC) at YWCA Lancaster. Tickets may be purchased at the Millersville University's Student Memorial Center ticket office, located in Room 103, 21 S. George St., Millersville, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekdays; at The Ware Center box office from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekdays; at www.artsMU.com; or by calling 717-871-7600. Remaining tickets will go on sale at the door beginning at 6 p.m. on April 6.

Since 1889, YWCA Lancaster has invested in the power of women by providing a variety of services that help women take charge of their own lives. Providing child care, housing, sexual assault prevention and counseling, and social justice advocacy programs, YWCA Lancaster is on a mission to strengthen individuals, families, and communities throughout the county. YWCA Lancaster is dedicated to the elimination of racism, the empowerment of women, and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all.

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, and YWCA Lancaster is hosting numerous events throughout the community. To see a listing of all the events, readers may visit www.ywcalancaster.org/SAAM.


Elverson Garden Club Excels At Philadelphia Flower Show March 21, 2018

Once again, members of the Elverson Garden Club placed at the Philadelphia Flower Show, successfully competing in the category titled "Interiorscape - A Passion for Plants." The show was themed "The Wonders of Water."

As part of the Interiorscape competition, themed "My Urban Oasis," entrants were required to create a comfortable room using plants and water to fashion a retreat or sanctuary. "The criteria was to fill a 10-by-12-foot space," explained flower show chair Carol Simonetti. "It had to be an interior room and have rooted plants. It also had to have a water feature."

The Elverson Garden Club created an urban office. In the back of the display, there were three large metal mesh screens hung with plants that were artistically arranged in the shape of a wave pattern to visually create motion. "The top part of those screens was (covered with) bromeliads, and (they were) filled in with spider plants, crotons and air plants," Simonetti noted.

The office desk featured a copper water feature that was able to self-water Sansevieria plants that were hung in containers upside down from the desk, providing a relaxing water sound.

Club members began working on the project in September of 2017. "We started staging the project and blocked the area off with tape," Simonetti said. "'My Urban Oasis' was geared to a young millennial in an urban setting. It would be her home office or home living space."

Club members volunteered to set up the display at the flower show, which ran from March 3 through 11. "We had from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on March 1 to set up, and then we had two hours the next morning to prepare for judging," Simonetti said.

During the show, each entry was actually judged twice. The first set of judges gave the Elverson Garden Club's entry a second-place ribbon, and the second set of judges awarded the club a third-place ribbon. "It's two totally different sets of judges. The first judging was on March 2 after we set up," explained Simonetti. "The first set loved it."

She noted that there were three other entries in the category. One depicted the library of a botanist. Another entry was a setup for a garage band, and the fourth entry was a potter's studio. Simonetti reported that all of the competitors in the category won blue ribbons for Class Commendations from the judges.

During the show, club members had to do maintenance on their entry. "Different members of the club went down every morning of the show at 6 a.m.," said Simonetti. "They watered the plants and made sure the water feature was running and the area was swept. It was a commitment on the club's part."

Simonetti noted that the local club traditionally does well at the Philadelphia Flower Show. In 2014, it won a blue ribbon for its Salvador Dali-inspired courtyard. In 2015, the club's "Shooting Stars" display won first place in the store window category. In 2016, the club won a ribbon for creating a floral carpet.

"It's the number-one flower show in the world; this is the 12th year the club has had an entry," Simonetti said. "We've done very well. They tend to give us a big space because they feel we have something that is show-worthy."

She said that the club has already planned to enter the 2019 flower show, hoping that its first choice of a balcony scene will be accepted for next year.

Those interested in becoming a member of the Elverson Garden Club are invited to attend the next club meeting, which will be held on Thursday, April 5, at 7 p.m. at the Crow's Nest Preserve, 201 Piersol Road, Elverson. Guest speaker Jeffrey Dorr will teach members about growing dinner-plate-size dahlias.

For membership information, readers may contact Linda Horner at 610-286-9184 or carlin59@aol.com.


Free Hot Meal

Leacock Presbyterian Church, 3183 Lincoln Highway East, Paradise, will offer a free hot meal on Thursday, March 22. Dinner will be served from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. in the accessible Smith Fellowship Hall.

The menu will feature ham, boiled potatoes, green beans, fruit salad, pepper cabbage, and dessert. For additional information, readers may call the church at 717-687-6619 or visit www.leacockpres.org.


Film Screening

Advoz Mediation and Restorative Practices will host a screening of the film "Circle Up" at 7 p.m. on Thursday, March 22, at Penn Cinema, 541 Airport Road, Lititz. Tickets may be purchased at www.advoz.org/events.

The film follows the story of a grieving mother, the men who murdered her son, and the unexpected relationships they create to prevent more violence.

On Thursday, April 19, Advoz will hold its annual dinner, Around the Table, at the Eden Resort & Suites, 222 Eden Road, Lancaster. The guest speaker will be Janet Connors, the woman featured in "Circle Up." Tickets for the dinner will go on sale on Thursday, Feb. 1, at www.aroundthetable.org.

For more information on Advoz and its programs, readers may visit www.advoz.org.

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