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Penn State Scandal: Alumni Raise Money For Sex Abuse Victims -- How You Can Help (VIDEO)

First Posted: 11/15/11 03:09 PM ET Updated: 12/16/11 10:20 PM ET

Thousands of Penn State University alumni, students, parents and fans have banded together to raise money for sex-abuse victims.

The sudden surge of support stems from the recent arrest of their alma mater's once beloved former football coach, Jerry Sandusky, for charges of 40 counts of sex abuse involving minors.

Jerry Needle, a 1986 graduate of Penn State, collaborated with fellow alumni to create Proud to Be a Penn Stater, self-described on the site as "a grassroots network of proud Penn State alumni...embarrassed and shocked by the recent events at Penn State."

The group has partnered with the Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network, or RAINN, the nation's largest anti-sexual violence organization, in an effort to "mobilize to raise funds for the victims and put the focus back where it should be -- on the victims," Needle told ABC news.

Using the hashtag #ProudPSUforRAINN on Twitter and Facebook, the organization has already raised over $383,000, according to its site. The group hopes to raise at least one dollar for every student to ever graduate from Penn State -- a total of over $550,000.

RAINN spokesperson Katherine Hull told ABC news that the donations will go directly to support the National Sexual Assault Online Hotline, an instant-message based crisis intervention website.

If you'd like to support the cause, RAINN is accepting donations online.

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Filed by Anna Bahr  |