I come not to
discuss my life experience
but rather to bring awareness of the impact
that abuse has on a person, especially on a child.
it causes one to despair, not knowing where to turn.
Emotional, mental, physical and sexual
None of them easy.
A child needs
reassurance that everything will be okay.
A child looks for a sense of security
But instead her trust is betrayed.
Why should a
child be weighed down by such a horrific experience.
Who will be guiding this child
towards a happy and successful life.
Unfair, to say
what are we doing to show our innocent children
that they are safe.
What difference are you willing
will you open your heart or will you turn the
It takes a tremendously strong spirit to bear
all its pressures
EYES WIDE OPEN
I want people to see
People must see
With eyes wide open
People must see
how many children have been hurt
the long lasting effects of abuse
that children must be free and have wings to fly
that children must have hope and security to grow
that children must have courage and not be afraid
People MUST see
With eyes wide open.
If hate is the cause
What is the cure
for a heart
that has been ravaged
and learned not to trust
the heart of another?
Love is the answer,
the healing balm
that knows no limits
that can see beyond
that can instill trust
and faith in goodness
This love is
patient and true.
This is the greatest gift
we can give one another.
It is the gift of healing.
It is the gift of wholeness.
It is the gift of integration
It is the gift of friendship.
It is precious,
It is priceless
And it is ours to give
or to withhold.
It is our choice.
So who is worthy
of this gift of love?
Do we decide?
Do we judge?
Who is worthy and who is not?
And who made us God B
to make such a choice
to judge another
as worthy or unworthy of our love?
And was I there
when their heart was afflicted?
by the enemies of love and life?
And can I feel
what they feel?
What they felt?
for I am not them
and they are not me.
So all the more reason
for me to keep my peace
on something I do not know.
For there is an honesty
in admitting that we do not know
nor can we feel the pain of another.
But there is a warmth and understanding
in a gentle touch
a gentle word,
a listening and caring heart.
This I can offer
This I will offer
This I will not withhold
for it brings strength
and comforts a grieving, suffering heart
telling them they are not alone.
It is time.
It is time for us to care
for the broken hearted
the bruised and battered heart
the heart that bleeds without ceasing
the heart that needs us.
Let us rise up in unity
in oneness and say
Let us rise up and say
Let us rise up and say
THIS IS NOT EXCUSABLE.
This is not acceptable
Justice shall prevail
and we shall learn
to love and care for another
and in this way
create a better world
to live in
IT IS TIME.
We children are equal members
of our community and as such have the same basic
rights as adults. We are not able to exercise our
rights because of our vulnerability.
Thus, we deserve and
are entitled to have access to adults who will:
love me unconditionally,
respect & validate me for who I am;
me on many levels because I speak with more
than my mouth. I speak with my emotions,
my body, my behaviour, my intellect, my
heart, my soul and my spirit;
feed me, clothe
me, keep me warm and safe, let me play,
have friends, know happiness & fun;
& help me to learn in every healthy
and let me be free from abuse;
in having my rights protected.
I need to be taken
seriously. I have a right to privacy and a right
to feel and express a range of emotions.
We children expect all adults to be responsible
for their actions. We expect adults to hold one
another accountable for their behaviours and to
follow through with the protecting and upholding
of our rights.
Dont just tell us that we are your most
valuable resource and future - prove it!
In the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights, the United
Nations has proclaimed that childhood is
entitled to special care and assistance,
that the family, as the fundamental group
of society and the natural environment for
the growth and well-being of all its members
and particularly children, should be afforded
the necessary protection and assistance
so that it can fully assume its responsibilities
within the community,
that the child, for the full and harmonious
development of his or her personality, should
grow up in a family environment, in an atmosphere
of happiness, love and understanding,
that the child should be fully prepared
to live an individual life in society, and
brought up in the spirit of the ideals proclaimed
in the Charter of the United Nations, and
in particular in the spirit of peace, dignity,
tolerance, freedom, equality and solidarity,
children are sexual beings and people. They have
a right to have their basic needs met. They have
the right to be who they are.
All children have the right
to be loved, to be safe, to be listened to. They
have to right to play, and to enjoy happiness and
fun. They have the right to a social life, to an
education, to make choices.
They are never too young to
learn in an appropriate, loving way. Children have
a right to validation, and to an advocate.
Why Rights are Important Children are equal members of
our community and have the same basic rights as
adults. They are not able to fully exercise their
rights, because of their vulnerability. Therefore
they deserve/are entitled to additional rights.
Listen to me when I say I need help. I count.
How do we tackle denial
By establishing accountability
by and for everyone to protect children and ensure
By listening to children.
By putting childrens rights
on a public agenda.
By making the topic of abuse not
By not tolerating secrets.
By listening to me on many
levels because I speak with more than my mouth.
Childrens Rights All children have the right
to be free from abuse.
The rights of all children must be
protected and enforced.
All children have the right to recovery.
They have a right to privacy, to feel and express
a range of emotions. They have a right to nourishment,
to receive unconditional love, and to be taken seriously.
Why are Rights Important? Adults who arent protected
as children need a lot from society. One child being
abused is one too many. Society cannot tolerate
Children are vulnerable. How
do we educate the public from a childs point
of view? Children need to know their rights about
their own bodies. They are our most valuable resource.
ON DEFINING THE RIGHTS OF CHILDREN:
Barrington, Eleanor. Childrens
Rights: New Hope for the Worlds Children.
Todays Parent, August 1991, vol. 8 no. 4,
Collins, Jerry. Parental Responsibility
Takes a Back Seat: Victoria Schools Become A Testing
Ground For Inculcation of Childrens
Rights Idealogy. BC Report, July 7,
1997, Vol. 8 no. 45, p.34-5 (English).
Direct Cinema. Promise Not To Tell.
Film. Distributed by McNabb and Connolly. 58 min.
Durrant, Joan E. Abolition
of Corporal Punishment In Canada: Parents
Versus Childrens Rights (1994) 2 The International
Journal of Childrens Rights 129. Canadian
Journal of Family Law, 1995, vol. 12 no. 2, p. 457-8.
Ford, Fred. Rights of Children
and Parents and the Duty of the State. Entourage,
1997, vol. 10 no. 3-4, p.10-15.
Franklin, Bob. Childrens
Political Rights. Empathic Parenting, Winter
1991, vol. 14 no. 1, p.22-6.
Kaye, Marcia. Kids Have Rights
Too! Canadian Living, November 1994, vol.
19 no. 11, p. 127-8.
McFeely, Tom. Childrens
Rights, Childrens Wrongs: A Victoria Meeting
Clears the Way for a Controversial U.N. Initiative.
BC Report, October 22, 1990, vol. 2 no. 8, p.30.
Morrow, Jeff. Child Advocate
Pushes Rights of Children (Child Welfare Act Amendments).
Windspeaker, September 8, 1989, vol. 7 no. 27, p.
Pearson, Landon. Childrens
Rights: A Community Responsibility. Health
Promotion in Canada, Winter 1991, Vol. 30 no. 3,
United Nations, General Assembly
and Canada, Human Rights Directorate. Convention
on the Rights of the Child. Ottawa: Human Rights
Wagner, Cynthia G. Guarding
Childrens Rights: Letting Children Have Their
Say May Help Safeguard Their Rights. Futurist,
November-December 1997, vol. 31 no. 6, p.16 (English).
Craig Kielburger. Gale Infobase,
August 1997 (English).
Children are a privilege...
...not a right!
that are abused...
...will be lost!
Stop the violence
help the children.
All people should be free
like a bird
free from a cage.
Hanna, age 9
UN Convention on
the Rights of the Child
Never give up on your
rights to be treated with
love and respect.
Please be strong and
brave and tell someone
who can help stop the
Now is the time to heal.
My prayers are with you all.
my precious son Isiah
Every child deserves
Don’t abuse your kids.
Stop and give a hand.
Kids have feelings.
Don’t because kids are
I think partens should
not have the right to
hit a child.
Kaitlyn, age 11.
I never went to school
because the kids made
fun of me and my mom
and dad was working,
so I stayed at home
and watched the kids.
It abuses children's
I hate it!
Zachary, age 11
Everyone has the right
to smile all the time.
Be good to your children.
Remember they are the
best link to the future
and will be there in the
end for their children.
I want my children
to say Hi to their great