On the 21st of December 2016, following the call I made on my blog http://www.maureenalikor.com/demystify-abuse/
and shared on my facebook wall https://web.facebook.com/mreal.berry/posts/638355879678746
Friends, sympathizers and well meaning Nigerians made donations in forms of cash, books, clothes, shoes and bags and together, the maiden edition was held.
The event had in attendance friends, facilitators and the general public and those within and without the environs of Rumuolumeni, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria.
We had facilitators speak to us on various topics, here is a list of the topics and the facilitators that handled each of them.
1. The Culture of Respect : Respect as a virtue is lacking in our society today. Young children walking past adults without greeting, adults disrespecting fellow adults and also disrespecting younger people and also people disrespecting themselves. There is also a case of gender disrespect and ‘positional disrespect, they are all anomalies and should be corrected.
This session was handled by Mrs. Otonye Inwang,
the CEO of Tallens Hut.
2. Forgiveness:Forgiveness is now like a taboo in our society, but it is a necessity. Imagine telling a rape victim that they need to forgive the rapist and watch the smug look on their faces. Yet, forgiveness is a compulsory part in the journey of healing and letting go.
This session was handled by Martins Alloy
3. Developing the mind via reading: Developing the mind is important but many leave their minds unfed and underdeveloped; little wonder they walk around oblivious of the power of their mind. Reading is one of the sure ways of developing the mind and widening our scope of life.
Who else is best suited to speak on the importance of reading but someone who reads widely; one who writes too?
The session was handled by Joseph Aito
He is the Sales Manager with PZ Nigeria. He is also the creative director of the dark notes: https://thedarknotes.com/ a blog where he writes his horror stories.
4. The importance of values: Our society has proven to be one that does not values, yet it is a very important aspect of life and living. Many of us live lives void of values, yet we expect to reap all the good fruits life has to offer.
This session was handled by Nsikan Friday
5. Building Positive and healthy self esteem: Research has shown the many people live lives battling with low self esteem and high self esteem. It may be as a result of their background or their live experiences; both past and present.
This session was handled by Hope Lawrence,
She is a teacher and graduate of English Language and Literature.
6. Sex: Sex is a word every one of us is exposed to, some very early in life, some quite late. We do not understand what it is, when we should engage in it and the outcomes of engaging in the act.
This session was handled by Mark Victor Befe
7. General Body Hygiene: during Menstrual Cycle and in our day to day living.
Many young girls are not taught how to properly take care of themselves during menstruation. They, unaware of it practice unhealthy hygiene.
Our facilitator bared it all, without sugarcoating words.
This session was handled by Miss Gladys Igbafidon
After the teaching sessions, we had survivors who were courageous enough to share their stories and their survival journey. They spoke with so much passion and were keen on reiterating the fact that there is a life after abuse or rape. And this is the main focus of demystify abuse campaign.
Two Survivors shared their stories.
- Mrs. Geraldine O.
- Mfoniso Isong
We were also graced with the presence of Doctors Without Borders. They specialize in handling rape cases, they offer drugs for prevention of HIV/AIDS, prevention of Sexually Transmitted Diseases, they also offer Emergency Contraception Counselling and Psychological Support and also Treatment of Physical Injuries.
They spoke to participants on preventive measures and on the need to seek medical attention after they experience rape or sexual abuse.
After the sessions and teachings, participants were given an opportunity to shop freely from the displayed books, clothes, shoes and bags.