May 3, 2002
Volume XXXV, No. 18



Cell phone donations could save lives of abuse victims

School of Nursing encourages San Antonians to participate in 'Call to Protect' program

PHOTO First-semester nursing student Mary Purke shows a few of the cell phones already donated on campus to the "Call to Protect" program.

Wireless phones come in handy for life's little emergencies. But for victims of domestic abuse, a cell phone could mean the difference between life and death.

The Center for Violence Prevention in the School of Nursing, along with faculty and students, have teamed with the Governor's Commission for Women, the First Ladies of Texas, Motorola, Cingular Wireless and Federal Express to help protect victims of domestic violence through the "Call to Protect" program.

"Call to Protect," a national initiative to protect victims of family violence, was created in 1996 by Motorola, the Wireless Foundation, selected telecommunication carriers and the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. A key component of the initiative is the "Donate a Phone" collection program. Through the program, used wireless phones are collected, refurbished and re-programmed with wireless emergency services and phone numbers and placed in the hands of domestic abuse victims.

Members of the Center for Violence Prevention have placed donation stations throughout the university campus to encourage the donation of used, unwanted cell phones.

"We encourage not only the university community, but everyone in San Antonio, to make a difference in someone's life by dropping off their used cell phones," said Dr. Margaret Brackley, professor of chronic nursing care and director of the Center for Violence Prevention. "We're proud to be a part of a program that can save lives right here in San Antonio."

During last year's phone collection campaign, Texans responded by donating more than 10,000 phones to the program. More than 100,000 phones were collected nationwide. The phones are given to domestic violence shelters, law enforcement agencies and other organizations working to combat domestic violence.

Citizens are asked to deactivate the phone's service and take the phone, charger and battery to a drop-off location at the university or to one of the Cingular Wireless locations in San Antonio now through May 10. Donations are tax deductible. For more information, call Carol Swartz, director of development for the School of Nursing, at ext. 7-3833.

Drop-off box locations

School of Nursing building, Room 1.106
School of Medicine building, Room 309L
Dental School building, Room 4.320
School of Allied Health Sciences, Dean's Office, Room 5.118

Cingular Wireless Stores
13127 San Pedro Ave.
4914 Northwest Loop 410
11745 Interstate 10 West
2716 Southwest Military Drive