Sunday, February 24, 2013

Spring Bring, Teens and Maintaining Cell Phone Bills

With the start of Spring Break around the corner (and summer soon after!), some people, including our teens, will be traveling abroad.

Nothing can put a damper on fond memories of a trip faster than sticker shock from your wireless bill. To help customers keep charges predictable when traveling internationally, AT&T offers these tips:

·         First, check service availability where you’re traveling.
·         Determine wireless device compatibility with your travel destination.
·         Check for provider hotspots where you’re traveling.
·         If you want to use data and track your usage abroad, purchase an international data package. An international data package can significantly reduce the cost of using data abroad. When evaluating which data package to purchase, look at your average monthly data usage on past statements and estimate your data needs based on the number of days you’ll be traveling internationally. Remember, streaming audio/video can use a lot of data very quickly.
·         Track your usage upon arrival abroad. Some devices (like iPhones) have native usage trackers, and most communication manager software for laptops will have usage tracking capabilities. If your device does not offer an embedded usage tracker, check to see if your provider has an app that will. For example, AT&T offers the myAT&T app
·         If you don’t want to receive email automatically, disable your device’s autocheck functionality. You may then use WiFi as a supplement to 3G/GPRS/EDGE to download and manually check email.
·         If you want to place calls but not use data, check the settings on your device before traveling abroad. By default, the setting for international data roaming will typically be in the “OFF” position.

Turning data roaming “OFF” blocks email, browsing, visual voicemail and downloads, but it will not block text messages. International roaming rates apply when you send text or picture/video messages.

Let’s face it, in a time when gas is sky-rocketing, the groceries are going up, the last thing we need to be faced with is another increase of a monthly bill.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Community Empowerment Series: Bullying Prevention Expert Comes to St. Johns County Florida

Did you know more than 160,000 U.S. students stay home from school each day for fear of being bullied?

Bullying is a growing epidemic in our country and Florida is not a stranger to it, however St. Johns County is taking action to prevent it.

The Community Empowerment Series is proud to bring internationally recognized Parenting and Bullying Prevention Expert Dr. Michele Borba to be their featured speaker on Saturday, March 9th at World Golf Village Renaissance Resort (Room D).

Due to the community demand, this is a free event and open to the public, however online registration is strongly recommended. Students 8 years-old and up are welcome.

Dr. Michele Borba is an internationally recognized expert and author on children, teens, parenting, bullying and moral development. Her work aims to help strengthen children’s character and resilience, build strong families, create compassionate and just school cultures, and reduce peer cruelty. Her practical, research-based advice is culled from a career of working with over one million parents and educators worldwide.

"Peer pressure and bullying are problems all school districts contend with. We have the opportunity to be proactive in our approach to solutions”, stated Superintendent Dr. Joseph Joyner, who will introduce Borba at the event. “Parents, teachers, support staff and students will all benefit from hearing Dr. Borba’s tips on how to present these issues.

This event is presenting by St. Johns County Education Foundation and Communities in Schools of St. Johns County. It is being sponsored by The St. Augustine Record and First Coast News.

Saturday, April 27th brings Theresa Payton who will be speaking about another hot topic our kids face today - Internet safety and online identity theft. Register today!

If you are local and would like to showcase your business, there are still vendor tables available. This is a great opportunity to let our community know who you are and what you have!

For more information visit

Print out the Bullying Prevention Flyer to pass on to your friends.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

February is Dating Violence Prevention Awareness Month

What is Sexual Abuse?

Sexual abuse refers to any action that pressures or coerces someone to do something sexually they don't want to do. It can also refer to behavior that impacts a person's ability to control their sexual activity or the circumstances in which sexual activity occurs, including oral sex, rape or restricting access to birth control and condoms.Some examples of sexual assault and abuse are:
  • Unwanted kissing or touching.
  • Unwanted rough or violent sexual activity.
  • Rape or attempted rape.
  • Refusing to use condoms or restricting someone’s access to birth control.
  • Keeping someone from protecting themselves from sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
  • Sexual contact with someone who is very drunk, drugged, unconscious or otherwise unable to give a clear and informed “yes” or “no.”
  • Threatening or pressuring someone into unwanted sexual activity.

Keep in Mind

  • Everyone has the right to decide what they do or don’t want to do sexually. Not all sexual assaults are violent “attacks.”
  • Most victims of sexual assault know the assailant.
  • Both men and women can be victims of sexual abuse.
  • Both men and women can be perpetrators of sexual abuse.
  • Sexual abuse can occur in same-sex and opposite-sex relationships.
  • Sexual abuse can occur between two people who have been sexual with each other before, including people who are married or dating.

What to Do

If you have been sexually assaulted, first get to a safe place away from the attacker. You may be scared, angry and confused, but remember the abuse was in no way your fault. You have options. You can:
  • Contact Someone You Trust. Many people feel fear, guilt, anger, shame and/or shock after they have been sexually assaulted. Having someone there to support you as you deal with these emotions can make a big difference. It may be helpful to speak with a counselor, someone at a sexual assault hotline or a support group. Get more tips for building a support system.
  • Report What Happened to the Police. If you do decide to report what happened, you will have a stronger case if you do not alter or destroy any evidence. This means don’t shower, wash your hair or body, comb your hair or change your clothes, even if that is hard to do. If you are nervous about going to the police station, it may help to bring a friend with you. There may also be sexual assault advocates in your area who can assist you and answer your questions.
  • Go to an Emergency Room or Health Clinic. It is very important for you to seek health care as soon as you can after being assaulted. You will be treated for any injuries and offered medications to help prevent pregnancy and STIs.
Remember there is always help. For more information or to find out about available resources in your area, chat with a peer advocate.

Source:  Love is Respect

Be an educated parent and a smart teenager.