Chester County’s Domestic Violence Center Continues Successful Youth Empowerment Programs

Coaching Boys Into Men (CBIM) and Coaching Girls Beyond the Game (CGBG)Rustin High School's Coach John Alvanitakis and the 2022 Rustin Girls' Softball Team piloted the nation's first ever Coaching Girls Beyond the Game program /Submitted Image

CHESTER COUNTY, PA — The Domestic Violence Center of Chester County (DVCCC) announced the continuation of its successful Coaching Boys Into Men (CBIM) and Coaching Girls Beyond the Game (CGBG) programs. These initiatives aim to empower student-athletes to combat abuse and violence, promoting safe and respectful environments in high school athletics and beyond. With funding from the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence (PCADV) through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the programs are set to run for the next five years.

Noah Stribrny, DVCCC’s new program coordinator, and Don Grinstead, Phoenixville Area High School’s Athletic Director, have been instrumental in reviving and expanding these programs in 2022 and 2023, especially during the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The CBIM program, which leverages the influence and mentorship of high school coaches, has seen significant success in creating positive change within Chester County schools. The Phoenixville football team, under Head Coach Anthony Ciarlello, demonstrated an increased ability to identify abuse in diverse scenarios and a commitment to standing up against disrespect and violence.

Similarly, the Phoenixville basketball team, led by Head Coach Eric Burnett, and the boys track and field team, guided by Head Coach Justin Winters, reported positive changes due to their participation in the CBIM program.

On the other hand, CGBG, developed by PCADV, aims to empower female athletes to recognize and confront abuse, disrespect, and violence. The Bayard Rustin softball team, under Head Coach John Alvanitakis, made significant strides in identifying and standing up against abusive situations through the CGBG program.

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Inspired by the impactful philanthropic initiatives of professional athletic organizations like the Philadelphia Phillies and Eagles, DVCCC has actively participated in the annual Domestic Violence Awareness Night at Citizen’s Bank Park and was a recipient of a 2023 Phillies Charities grant.

In line with CDC DELTA grant focus areas, DVCCC plans to amplify the program’s community impact through collaborative efforts in community cleaning and greening projects with their student athletes. Kisha Middleton, a dedicated member of the CBIM/CGBG Program Advisory Committee and the Associate Athletic Director for Competitive Excellence at Lincoln University, has already set an exemplary standard. Her leadership was instrumental in engaging Lincoln’s Basketball team to spearhead a vibrant campaign decorating downtown Oxford, PA with purple ribbons during Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October.

DVCCC is unwavering in its dedication to creating safe and respectful environments in high school athletics and beyond. Building on the remarkable achievements of Coaching Boys Into Men and Coaching Girls Beyond the Game in 2022, and during the ongoing 2023 season, the center is resolute in its mission to empower student-athletes and cultivate the leaders of tomorrow.

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