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OCO Tree Planting Recognizes Oswego County Crime Victims

Written by: John DeRousie, Custom Marketing Solutions
Fulton, NY – Staff from Oswego County Opportunities Services to Aid Families program welcomed Senator Patty Ritchie, town of Parish officials and community members for a tree planting ceremony in Parish.

Held in recognition of National Crime Victims Week and Sexual Assault Awareness Month, the tree planting honored victims of crime in Oswego County.

Senator Patty Ritchie joined town of Parish officials, representatives of Oswego County Opportunities and staff from OCO’s SAF program for a tree planting ceremony in Parish.  From left are: Executive Director of OCO, Diane Cooper-Currier; Senator Ritchie; Director, OCO Crisis and Development Services, Eric Bresee; SAF program assistant, Chris Gill; SAF coordinator, Cristy King; and Parish Town Supervisor, Stephen Stelmashuck.  Other Parish officials at the ceremony included board member Mary Lou Guindon; deputy supervisor Fred Swartz; town clerk, Kelly Reader; and highway supervisor, Belden Dawley.
Senator Patty Ritchie joined town of Parish officials, representatives of Oswego County Opportunities and staff from OCO’s SAF program for a tree planting ceremony in Parish. From left are: Executive Director of OCO, Diane Cooper-Currier; Senator Ritchie; Director, OCO Crisis and Development Services, Eric Bresee; SAF program assistant, Chris Gill; SAF coordinator, Cristy King; and Parish Town Supervisor, Stephen Stelmashuck. Other Parish officials at the ceremony included board member Mary Lou Guindon; deputy supervisor Fred Swartz; town clerk, Kelly Reader; and highway supervisor, Belden Dawley.

The tree was planted in Parish at the intersection of routes 69 and 69A.

“This is the 11th year that SAF has planted a tree in honor of Victims of Crime, within Oswego County,” said SAF Education Program Manager, Meredith Needham. “The tree is meant to be a living sign of hope for those affected by crime that their community has not forgotten about them and supports them in their struggles to rebuild their lives. It is the goal of SAF to plant a tree in every city, village and town of Oswego County, to demonstrate that victimization occurs in all areas of our community and can affect anyone and to establish a living sign of hope and support to the many Victims of Crime within our county.”

During the ceremony Senator Ritchie announced that she had secured $10,000 in state funding for victims and survivors of domestic violence in Oswego County.

Needham said that SAF and OCO, Inc. are extremely grateful for Senator Ritchie’s recognition and support of victim services, adding that the funding will benefit the entire community and is a wonderful gift to victims and survivors.

“On behalf of OCO and the staff of the SAF program, I extend a heartfelt thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s event, including the town and village of Parish for hosting the ceremony and for supporting victims of crime, and to Matt Savory of Lowe’s in Oswego for donating the tree.  We would also like to recognize the support of the NYS Office of Victim Services, whom underwrote the cost of the plaque, which was placed by the tree,” said Needham.

“Additionally, we would like to thank the many businesses that supported our efforts during Sexual Assault Awareness Month to help end sexual violence in Oswego County by allowing us to displaying information regarding the SAF program: Nick’s Club 48, Tavern on the Lock, Crazy Gator, Upper Landings, Red Brick Pub, Floody’s, and Pies Guys in Fulton; DS Humphrey’s, Bridge St. Pizza, Franco’s Pizza, Dominoes, Pizza Villa, and Cam’s New York Pizzeria, in Oswego; Stefano’s and Paulanjos in Mexico; Eddy’s Place, Steffano’s, and Ma Barker’s Tavern in Pulaski; Jake’s Grub and Grog and Waterfront Tavern in Central Square; and G and F Pizza & Restaurant in Parish,” added Needham.

OCO, Inc is a private, non-profit agency that has been supporting communities throughout Oswego County since 1966. A member agency of the United Way of Greater Oswego County, OCO provides more than 50 vital services throughout 80 separate locations.

For more information, visit www.oco.org