Recent South Australian media reports of torture and starvation of children have helped motivate Adelaide counsellor and parent Prue Blackmore to initiate Project Daylight, a cause that will encourage people to become advocates and voices for children who are – in any given moment – suffering some kind of abuse or violence.
Blackmore asks: “How has it come to this?”
The Project Daylight founder says that the world in which we live has endemic rates of violence inflicted upon children and that government and non government agencies are overwhelmed with reported cases of childhood abuse and neglect.
“Many children reported quickly fall through the cracks,” Blackmore says.
“This is our world. We witness these things in small ways on a regular basis, in the homes of family and friends and in the public eye. We have all been trained to ‘not rock the boat’ – to ‘not interfere’, to look the other way.”
Blackmore attributes it to busy lives, stretched too thin,
“It is easier to simply turn away. We rationalize it by minimizing it. Are we so cut off from our own pain that we simply cannot see the devastation it causes a child? And then these children grow up and we wonder why we have such high rates of anxiety and depression in the adult world.
“It is a cycle of pain and heartache that needs to be addressed before we drown in it.”
Blackmore says that we meet bullies in the home, in the playground and in the work place and they create havoc in human lives.
“Longitudinal research demonstrates that the seeds of adult mental illness and suffering are often sown in painful childhoods.
“What is amazing about speaking up is that it is often all that is needed to change things,” she says. “People act unconsciously, without thought. Bring it to their attention and it shows the child there is another possibility and it either shames the bully or causes the thoughtless to think about the consequences of their action on the child.”
How do we turn the tide of human misery and suffering that begins in childhood?
“One child at a time,” Blackmore says.
“It is a call for decency. It is a recognition that it takes a village to raise a child and these children live in our village and are our responsibility. Children do not belong to their parents, they are not the property of someone to do as they see fit with.
“Rise up is the call, speak out and each time you do that you instill hope in another and heal a wound of silence in yourself.”
To participate in Project Daylight, please visit http://www.causes.com/causes/561320
Prue Blackmore, Thrive By Design
P: 0419 819 089