Safe Symposium held in West Jordan aimed to help prevent child sexual abuseNov 30, 2023 01:04PM ● By Linda Steele
John Miller was the keynote speaker at the Safe Symposium in West Jordan aimed at creating solutions with child sexual abuse. (Photo courtesy Saprea)
A symposium to bring awareness and solutions to child sexual abuse was held in West Jordan in late October.
John Miller, CEO of JR Miller Enterprises, was a keynote speaker at the Safe Symposium. He said when sexual abuse happens it may happen to the person, but it ripples out and can hurt family members.
“This is an unspoken epidemic. It is truly an epidemic, and we are the ones who can step up and make a difference and change people’s lives,” Miller said.
The symposium was hosted by Saprea, Malouf Foundation and Prevent Child Abuse in Utah with Policy Project also in attendance. This was the first time the four biggest players in Utah brought themselves and their networks together. There were also lawmakers, lobbyists and community advocates in attendance. The symposium aimed to bring public attention and find real solutions as the groups brainstormed ideas and shared insights about how to engage lawmakers and the community. About 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 13 boys in the United States experience child sexual abuse according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Nichole Coombs, director of video production with Saprea—a nonprofit fighting child sexual abuse—told the City Journals she hopes women can find hope instead of frustration and start their healing journey. She emphasized that Saprea offers 100% free retreats.
The goal at Saprea is to empower survivors and take control of their healing and learn how the trauma they went through affects their body and brain. They can learn how to cope with all of the hard things they are experiencing and live better lives through the healing process. Saprea’s goal is to help anyone who has been abused as a child, anyone who is currently experiencing abuse, or anyone who is at risk for being abused.
“We want to stop child sexual abuse, because it is impacting millions of people around the world, it impacts them more than just physically, it affects them throughout the rest of their lives,” said Sarah Jensen, Saprea communication strategist. “There are statistics that show people who have been sexually abused are more likely to drop out of school, more likely to die by suicide, or they struggle financially. If we can address this fundamental piece of safety for children it will help them to grow and develop, they will be able to help protect other kids, help themselves, and help other families. It is a ripple effect.”
Saprea has the End of Year Fundraising. People who want to give at the end of the year to help support Saprea with its mission to help those who are victims or have been victimes of child sexual abuse.
Chris Yadon is the managing director of Saprea. “There is movement that is happening right now and the movement is significant,” he said. “Something we have never seen before in our state on this issue. We are finally accepting the reality of this issue, and we are acknowledging this issue and we have to work on it collectively.”
“When we work on this together, we can do things far greater that the sum of the individual things you might do separately,” said Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson.
Saprea officials said the nonprofit help women from all over the world with no cost other than the capacity to get there, even being willing to pick them up from the airport if needed. Women who have attended the retreat have had a a 40% plus increase of life satisfaction and their PTSD symptoms have decreased by almost 40% according to Saprea officials.
For information about Saprea and the free retreats go to saprea.org. λ