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National Safe Place Partners With Block5 for Groundbreaking QR Coding
Mar 18, 2010 (03:03 PM EDT)


New technology allows teens to find help fast with the help of smart phones

LOUISVILLE, Ky., March 18 /PRNewswire/ -- National Safe Place (NSP), an organization that provides education, resources and safe locations for teens at risk, has announced a partnership with Louisville-based technology company Block5, in correlation with National Safe Place week, March 11-15. This partnership will allow NSP to use the latest in QR coding technology to further its mission of helping at-risk youth.

QR codes are a well established technology for easily serving relevant information to consumers and customers.  By downloading a free QR coding application, smart phone users can capture codes using the phones' camera function. After the application captures the code, the phone will automatically connect to the data linked with that code.

"The mission of National Safe Place is to educate young people and provide immediate assistance for teens in crisis, so they don't end up on the streets," said Sandy Bowen, NSP Executive Director. "QR coding is our next step in using emerging technology to provide resources to teens in crisis."

In honor of National Safe Place Week, National Safe Place is launching a week-long "Don't Get Boxed In: Text-4-Help: 69866" campaign to raise awareness of the risks associated with teen homelessness and the services available across the country to youth in crisis. As part of this campaign, NSP will use QR coding provided by Block5 to direct teens to online NSP resources for an additional quick way to access help.  After National Safe Place Week, NSP will continue to use this new technology as another means to reach out to youth in crisis across the country.

"We are very excited to help National Safe Place raise awareness of their programs," said Matthew D Beck, Block5 founder and partner.  "We hope that by making information easier to obtain, more at risk teenagers can find a safe and welcoming environment to find the help they need."

About National Safe Place

National Safe Place (NSP), headquartered in Louisville, Ky., provides training and technical assistance for youth service agencies and businesses interested in developing a Safe Place program.  Safe Place sites provide access to immediate help and safety for all young people in crisis. A public-private network of more than 17,000 sites across the country extends the doors of local youth shelters by displaying the Safe Place sign. Business partners and community locations that appeal to youth – such as fast food restaurants, convenience stores, fire stations, public buses and libraries – connect kids looking for help with the youth service agency. In 2009, 7,289 youth received immediate help at a Safe Place site. Another 6.710 youth contacted a Safe Place site or shelter for help after learning about the program through school and community education. The Safe Place program was created by the YMCA of Greater Louisville in 1983. For additional information, visit www.nationalsafeplace.org.

About Block5

Block5 is Louisville, Ky.-based company providing a robust and scalable communications platform.  Our technologies offer the ability to provide customers with up-to-date and relevant information, on their terms, when they need it most.  We believe that the most important time to engage a customer is when they are in front of the product and through our QR code technology and iPhone reader (QR app) we offer that capability to our clients. We also provide clients with the ability to quickly and efficiently communicate across email, phone, text messaging, web, digital signage and social media. Our solution, JetPack, is rooted in the power of cloud computing, making it capable of handling any situation, and impervious to terrestrial complications.

SOURCE National Safe Place