Mon-Valley Safety Program Enters 21st Year
Paglia, Ron, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
For the 21st consecutive year, a child registry safety and identification program for kindergarten students in the area is being sponsored by the Auxiliary of Mon-Vale Health Resources Inc. and the Mon Valley Police Chiefs Association.
Mon-Vale Health Resources is the parent company of Monongahela Valley Hospital, and the program is funded by the MVHR Fund Development Committee.
"This is an excellent program," Stephen V. Russell, superintendent of Belle Vernon Area School District, said as the 2009 program opened at Marion Elementary Center. "We can never do enough to ensure the safety and protection of our children, no matter what ages they might be. We are grateful to Monongahela Hospital and its auxiliary for presenting this program and also to the police officers who give of their time to participate."
Washington Township police Superintendent Raymond Moody and Officer Howard Rider conducted the session at Marion and used the Fingerprint America kits to implement it. Rostraver police will handle a similar assignment at Rostraver Elementary Center, also a BVA school, on Oct. 13. Both departments have been involved with the program since its inception in 1989.
"We are pleased to be partners with the hospital, the auxiliary and the school district for this important program," Moody said. "The fingerprints and other information in the ID booklet serve as a valuable resource for the parents of the children and provide a prime tool for police and other authorities in the event that a child is missing."
Janet M. Cieply, community relations director at Monongahela Valley Hospital, who helps coordinate the programs at area schools, said the idea behind child registry and the Fingerprint America child identification and DNA kit is to consolidate information about a child so that information is readily available if it should ever be needed.
"The basic tenet is to furnish law enforcement agencies with sufficient supportive materials to provide a quick and effective search mechanism in the event a child is missing," Cieply said.
In addition to Belle Vernon Area, other school districts participating in this year's programs are Bethlehem-Center, California Area, Charleroi Area, Frazier, Monessen, Ringgold and Yough. …