Look at a group of ten children. One out of those ten children will unfortunately be or already have been sexually abused before the age of 18.
Put that ten percent of children into their own group of ten and look at the group again. 1-2 of those child abuse victims were violated on a school day. In that group of victims, every 2 out of 10 of them were sexually abused by their 8th birthday. 9 children out of the 10 will know their abuser.
We live in a society that sexual abuse for children often goes unnoticed or untreated in the most unfortunate ways. Children who are sexually abused are at a significantly greater risk for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Anxiety, Depression, and suicide attempts. Sexual abuse for children may lead to academic difficulties and this history also increase the chance of victims dropping out of school. Studies also show that sexually abused children are twice as likely to run away from home.
As the number of victims grow, the necessity of resources increases. In Kent, Michigan, an organization has opened a free Children’s Assessment Center (CAC) for children who may have been sexually abused. This year they will be servicing nearly 800 children. Some of the free treatment services include: therapy, victim family support, law enforcement, and even a variety of training about sexual abuse for communities. CAC also provides support, assessment, and treatments for children who’s guardians believe they may have been sexually abused.
With much gratitude, Women’s Republic is proud to announce the collaboration with Kent’s Childen’s Assessment Center and our Staff Writer Alexandria Piette. Piette is currently in the process of becoming a foster sister and has delved deep into the world of foster care. Throughout her experience, she has learned of the many traumas these children can endure and found CAC through her studies. For Piette’s 18th birthday, she is teaming up with CAC to fund-raise and spread awareness for the necessity of resources for sexual abuse victims.
Individuals who have been sexually abused are oftentimes out-casted in society. Places like [Children’s Assessment Center] familiarize us with the issue, and show us how to be present for children in need.“
Piette and CAC are offering a few different ways you can contribute to the success of this resource.
- Monetary Donations: You can donate any amount in the form of checks. To get the information of where to send the checks to, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org. With this check donation, you will be provided a mailed tax receipt and a guarantee of the proper use of your donation.
- CAC Amazon Wishlist: Click here to be redirected to the wish-list pertaining items that will be put to use during the services provided to abuse victims. Be sure to include “Allie’s Eighteenth Birthday Fundraiser” in the note-card before checking out!
- Coping Boxes: These are essentially a therapeutic care package for the children at CAC. Read below for what you can include:
We are always accepting small plastic tubs and the following items to place inside: journals, coloring books (child & adult), coloring supplies (crayons, colored pencils, markers), journals with locks, stress balls, sensory toys (squishy, texturized toy items), inspiration stones, bubbles, small games/puzzles, lotion, jump ropes, small stuffed animals, nail polish, bracelet making supplies, toy cars, headphones, kinetic sand, any small comfort items, and any small toys or games that could assist a child in distracting themselves from upsetting feelings or thoughts.”
- Materials for Art Therapy: Representatives from CAC recommend clippings and cut-outs for the children to make collages. The collages are a visual representation of the child’s mental health and growth.
This fundraiser starts today and is running until September. Feel free to reach out to Piette with any questions regarding this fundraiser. Be sure to also use the hashtag #Allies18thBirthdayFundraiser for any social media posts related to this fundraiser!
Statistics provided by Darkness to Light.