Tonight's special guest, Lee Ann Mead, abused from four to sixteen years old by her step father, is a survivor from Oregon. She's the founder and president of "Sparks of Hope." Their Mission is to empower children who are survivors of physical or sexual abuse to thrive by providing special services to encourage hope, and by creating opportunities that will develop trust and healing so they can achieve life-long success. Lee Ann says, "To accomplish our mission we grant wishes to these children. Abused children usually only wish for the simplest gifts, such as a new pair of shoes, musical instruments, lessons, a birthday party. The simple things we take for granted they never have had the opportunity to experience." She continues, "To encourage continued healing and success, we will offer mentoring and camps to teach them to go from victim to survivor, survivor to thriver, and from thriver to warrior. These life skills will allow them to someday be mentors themselves." According to a recent OregonLive article: The kids will attend a week-long girls or boys summer camp for three years in a row. The first camp will focus on taking the kids from the "victim" mentality to "survivor." The second will push kids past the anger to become a "thriver," and in the third and final camp, kids will become mentors. Mead says "Sparks of Hope" is collaborating with child psychologists, counselors and attorneys to create a safe and effective camp model. They hope to start the camps in summer 2013.
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