So I’m researching the age to speak to kids about sexual assault awareness. The challenge is that school administration and the parents are so jaded with the word sex that discussing it is not an option. It's challenging to develop a workshop for the youth when you have the challenges of society that keep acting like they don't want to. I’m trying to develop a workshop that can make the parents and administration feel at ease. The reality is that when discussing violent crime and prevention you have to explain the act and break it down so that kids are aware and strong enough to tell someone if they are sexually assaulted. The biggest problem we have today is that some of the youth are not taught in school or at home the basic body parts names such as vagina or penis. Though for some children they are naive or the parents are shielding them however long they can from the real world and the demons that possess some folks. You know I thought just telling my story would be enough the more I have researched this issue the largest victim of sexual assaults are the children that are under the age twelve.
We want to see our children innocent and they are, but we must bring awareness to the fact there are perverts and pedophiles everywhere. Recently the pope apologized to hundreds of people who were sexually assaulted as children in the Catholic Church but are adults now. These cases shows there is a need to discuss this issue our children aren’t safe in this world without preparing then for the worst. Here in Rochester, New York there were several clergy accused of the sexual molestation on a child. where I reside there were I ask myself this question daily why do I care about other folks children? Then the reality sets in that not everybody has the support of family or support system especially a child that has been victimized. As a survivor of sexual assault it took me over 30 years to finally express to folks around me what happened to me at fifteen years old. In the black community we don’t talk about mental health or rape it’s like a taboo subject. I keep wondering why don't we talk about rape or mental health in the Black and Latino community, what's the stigma? I tend to think it's fear, that someone will think we are crazy if we inform our child about sexual assault awareness. What will people say about me or our family? I recently met someone that had a chance to assist me but instead they suggested I make a film on Rosa Parks and the work she did prior to the bus sit in. While the topic that was suggested could be an asset to Black women cinema, I need to stay on task on sexual assault awareness.
I think my topic is scary to society because it's apparent that sexual assault is everywhere including the church. A few years ago I can recall watching the tell- lie-vision (TV) and witnessing Bishop, Joe Flowers from Walk of Life Christian Center charged with sexual assault on a child and showed no regret in what he did.
What is the purpose of my rant? Well to be clear it's exemplifying the need of having this discussion in schools, libraries and churches about sexual assault awareness. Our children deserve to be protected and warned about these type of predators. Recently I emailed over twenty churches in the Rochester area about Sexual assault awareness I tell you no lie, only one church responded. Needless to say I still have life in these bones, so I will continue to reach out to more faith based organizations and organizations. I know that eventually someone will hear me and assist me in getting the word out to our youth. I hope it is soon because my poor body and spirit is drawing weary.
Trying to keep my mental in tact when so much around me is going on. My issues started in June when a man hit my vehicle, causing me extreme back pain, Uber not sending documentation I was driving for them, the police officer who was negligent in filing my accident report a month later which favored me but was inconsistent which held up all my money and payments due to me from workers comp and the other drivers insurance company. So as I try to not to be stressed about money and events in my life I find myself stressed. Not to mention I haven't been able to sell my photography online. Haven't been able to raise a lot of money for my film "Tenacidad" which explores my own sexual assault. Enough of the woe is me!
I can say I am thankful though I have a roof over my head and food to eat. Though I am uncomfortable by America's standards I am truly rich in spirit and I can't deny that. No matter the challenges I face, I will continue to finish what I started. "Do or die Bed Stuy" mentality right now. Brooklyn folks know what I mean if they don't they ain't from Brooklyn.
If you would like to learn more about what I do or assist me on this journey please feel free to check out www.nichollelavann.com You can make a donation online to my film or support me by purchasing some phenomenal photos from my online gallery. Thanks for you guys that can assist in any way, even if it's just getting the word out there and pasting my Fractured Atlas page to folks who aren't familiar with me. Thank you!
#mentalhealth #children #sexualassaultawareness #joeflowers #nichollelavann #rochester