Everyday thousands of children are being sexually abused. You can stop the abuse of at least one child by simply praying. You can possibly stop the abuse of thousands of children by forwarding the link in First Time Visitor? by email, Twitter or Facebook to every Christian you know. Save a child or lots of children!!!! Do Something, please!

3:15 PM prayer in brief:
Pray for God to stop 1 child from being molested today.
Pray for God to stop 1 child molestation happening now.
Pray for God to rescue 1 child from sexual slavery.
Pray for God to save 1 girl from genital circumcision.
Pray for God to stop 1 girl from becoming a child-bride.
If you have the faith pray for 100 children rather than one.
Give Thanks. There is more to this prayer here

Please note: All my writings and comments appear in bold italics in this colour

Thursday, 19 January 2017

'Stop The Clock' Campaign Exposes the Grim Reality of Child Abuse

Child abuse laid bare by AMA NSW and Children's Hospital Westmead's Stop The Clock campaign
Kate Aubusson 

In a room on the second floor of the Children's Hospital Westmead is a team of specialised staff weighed down by a collective consciousness, burdened by countless horrific cases of child abuse.

The hospital's child protection unit has treated infants just days old, toddlers, school children and adolescents for brutal physical injuries, sexual abuse and neglect inflicted by adults who should have protected and nurtured them.

They have seen broken bones, bruises, burns, cuts, serious head injuries, abdominal and spinal injuries, babies shaken so hard their brain detaches from their skull, and the devastating effects of prolonged sexual violence.

"We see children, babies who come in in a state of starvation because they haven't received the food that they need to survive," senior social worker Calli Goninan said.

Dr Grace Wong, Professor Brian Owler and social worker Calli Goninan deal with horrific cases of child abuse at the Children's Hospital Westmead.  Photo: Janie Barrett

"We see children with chronic illnesses who have not been given the medicine they need. We have children living in terror every day, living in homes where there is domestic violence. We have children living with long-term shame and guilt because they have been [sexually] abused."

The abuse can go on for years.

"In fact, it goes on so long the child doesn't remember a time before the abuse," she said. "They can't recall a time when they felt safe and they can't remember a time when they have learnt an adult is trustworthy.

"Yet we expect these children to talk about what's happened to them."

It makes for uncomfortable conversation. But these doctors, social workers and therapists are speaking out for one reason: they need us to speak up.

The Child Protection Unit and the Australian Medical Association NSW on Wednesday launched the Stop The Clock campaign, to equip healthcare professionals and the public with the resources needed to rescue children from abuse.

Minister for Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Pru Goward at the Stop The Clock launch on Wednesday.  Photo: Janie Barrett

Every 15 minutes a child is abused in Australia, national data shows.

There were more than 42,400 substantiated cases of child abuse in Australia in 2014-2015, according to state and territory child protection and support services.

The number of child abuse cases has risen by 35 per cent since 2010-2011.

The campaign's website is not just a mine of information for doctors and the community, offering instruction on how to report abuse, and videos of the child protection unit staff sharing their experiences.

It also attempts to speak directly to children who may be victims of abuse, telling them: "It's not your fault, even if you're told it is … This is not a secret you should keep."

"It is so hard for kids to speak up but some do, and it takes incredible bravery to do so," Ms Goninan said. "As adults we need to listen, we need to believe [them]."

Paediatric neurosurgeon and former AMA president Brian Owler was prepared to treat children with tumour and trauma, but never expected he would have tiny victims of abuse in his surgical suite, such as babies with subdural haematomas after being violently shaken.

"It doesn't take much shaking of a baby to tear those little fragile veins that run between the brain and skull," said Professor Owler, the driving force behind the Stop The Clock

"Sometimes this is really just the tip of the iceberg," he said of the shaken babies who also presented with hemorrhages and multiple fractures that were at different stages of healing, the hallmark of repeated abuse.

"Meanwhile that little brain shrinks. That brain literally melts away, and with it melts away the potential and future aspirations of that child."

The child protection unit's consultant paediatrician Grace Wong rarely sees physical abuse in isolation. It's often accompanied by sexual and emotional abuse or neglect.

"In many cases the abuse is occurring in an environment where there is already a pattern of entrenched violence within the family and in the home.

"Parents and carers with limited support and struggling to manage a whole host of their own difficulties are particularly vulnerable," Dr Wong said.

NSW Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Pru Goward said the campaign was a call to action.

"We have all seen it. We have all sensed it. We need to be empowered to act on it," Ms Goward said. "The lives of our most vulnerable children may depend on what we do."

The connections between child abuse, drug and alcohol abuse, and mental illness in adulthood was "frighteningly strong", Ms Goward said.

"They are tragically part of intergenerational abuse and neglect.

"I have met countless, countless women who are drug addicts or alcoholics who have their own children in child protection, [and] had a history of child sexual abuse.

"Parental substance misuse, domestic and family violence and parental [mental health] problems are so often not only common drivers of abuse but the key to repetition of that cycle," she said.

This was a clock that absolutely needed to be stopped, she said.

The original article with "It's not your fault" video can be seen here.