We've all heard the shocking news stories. Stories of teachers, coaches and others in positions of authority who are charged after years of sexual abuse of children in their care. Stories of police breaking up child internet pornography rings.
One Cochrane family wants to shine a light on child sexual abuse by bringing a seminar to Cochrane from Little Warriors, a national charitable organization that is committed to the awareness, prevention and treatment of child sexual abuse.
Jill Stilling-Allen, along with her husband Jeremy and daughter Alexandria are working with Little Warriors to bring their Prevent It seminar to the community next March. Originally they had planned a September 30th date for the seminar, but a lack of advanced publicity led to a poor turnout. Allen hopes with more publicity for the March seminar, more people will come and want to take action on child sexual abuse.
"It's an insidious problem problem that we want to motivate people to be educated about," says Allen. "We have a personal interest in preventing sexual abuse, our whole family does. We're trying to help people to be comfortable in being educated and perhaps taking a stand and understanding what they can do so there's more hope than helplessness,"
The Prevent It workshop by Little Warriors educates adults to take action through gaining knowlege to help prevent and respond to child sexaul abuse.
Experts estimate that one in three girls and one in six boys will experience sexual abuse before their 18th birthday. 95 percent of these children will know the perpetrator and 95 percent of cases will go unreported.
Allen feels that the seminar is invaluable for parents, grandparents, teachers, professionals and organizations that work with children.
"I believe they should all have the opportunity to see the Prevent It program. Just to become aware that children are vulnerable to some of the stuff that they don't even know the signs of. So that they can be a little more aware. It is a very empowering workshop. There is underground internet porn, there are people who exploit children. We need to know. It takes courage to speak out and we're speaking out."
Although the next Prevent It seminar isn't scheduled in Cochrane for nearly five month, Allen would love to hear from anyone interested in the seminar or knowing more about it.
You can contact her by emailing: [email protected]