Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Working with others

Hello, and thanks for reading my contribution to this blog. When Angela first asked me to contribute, I immediately said "Yes, of course, I'd love too", and then I wondered, what would be important from my perspective? First, I think it's important for you to know about Bikers Against Child Abuse - BACA. If you aren't familiar with us, go to www.bacausa.com for our mission statement, videos, and general information. Also, I would like to say that everything I write in this blog is my opinion, based on my experience, and does not necessarily represent any "official" BACA position.

I found out about BACA from Angela Shelton, and got involved in September of '06. I founded, and am President of the L.A. chapter. I love BACA because I get to ride my motorcycle ('91 Harley FXR) and help kids. What we do is hands on - we become part of these kids lives, and they become part of us. We are a family. We are all volunteers, and BACA is a 501c3 non- profit. People often ask me why I do this, and why am I willing to put so much of myself into BACA? I do this because I am inspired. I believe in being of service to others. We make a real difference in the lives of abused children. When these children join our family, they become less afraid of the world around them. They can sleep at night. They find the courage within themselves to grow from victims of abuse into empowered survivors. I feel honored, privileged, and humbled by the opportunity to participate in these kids lives.

The cycle of abuse is something that all of us, together, have the power to change. I believe helping these kids will contribute to breaking that cycle. I also believe that survivors can use their experience to empower others, and that makes everyone involved stronger. With that in mind, I encourage everyone involved to work together in this fight against abuse, and to help each other on the road to recovery, healing, and empowerment. Victims of abuse can, and do, grow into very strong survivors.

But what if you are in the middle of it right now? What do you do? Where do you go? What happens now? If you believe your life or the lives of your children are in danger, make an exit plan, and get out. Right now. Call someone you trust and tell them what's happening. Ask them to help you find resources in your community - medical care, law enforcement, shelters, therapy. Would you help someone close to you if they were in your situation? Of course you would. Reach out. Ask for help. If you're afraid, all you need is enough courage to take the first step. Make the first call for help. It's tough, but you can do it. Do it now.