The Impact of Change by Rhett Hackett, President & Co-Founder of The Humanity Preservation Foundation
I am often asked “how can we create change when it comes to the sexual abuse & molestation of children”. The answer is that you educate and build an army! You recruit from all areas and I can’t think of a better group than that of med students about to become doctors!
On the edge of such an important month, Child Abuse Awareness & I can’t think of a better way to kick it off then lecturing for the 4th year in a row to med students at the University of Penn – Perelman School of Medicine. Students were provided with my personal story/journey of sexual abuse, appearance on Oprah, the launch of the foundation, and how they can make a difference as they take hold of their career and commitment to better the world as a doctor.
The feedback was phenomenal during the presentation, Q&A afterwards, and then individual feedback post lecture as they exited. Comments ranged anywhere from the future docs to saying “That was the best lecture since starting med school” to hearing the personal testimony of folks that had also been abused and being there that day provided them with hope! Handshakes, pats on the back, and questions that will help set the groundwork for being vigilant in looking for the hidden signs of sexual abuse both as a child and an adult. The message detailed was listen to how your life speaks to you! If it doesn’t seem right or more importantly it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. Sadly, there are no x-ray machines that show the past history of sexual abuse as many times it isn’t violent nor are there visible marks remaining. Certainly, adults suffering hide the invisible scars internally and it is quite possible that their visit to the their doctor as a result of a medical need comes from PTSD brought on by their childhood trauma and the poor individual has no idea the depth of their wound for they have hid behind the shame for so long!
I would have to say that my highlight came when a student quoted words from my presentation in which I said that I hope that in their career when the time came they remembered what I had said and she said to me “it is a presentation I will never forget!” That is impact! That is how change is created!
So how do we continue to generate it? Build an army! Take a good look at the pic above! Hello America! You are looking at the next set of doctors about to hit the world of medicine with a better knowledge of sexual abuse and violence than when they walked into that lecture hall! As they begin their journey, and step out into the world to help heal and protect I can’t help but think that someday, some poor kid is going to come before them and be saved because we managed to plant a seed of knowledge. As the saying goes,
“He that soweth bountifully shall reap bountifully”
Yeah, that happened today 100+ times over with each and everyone of those students . . . a harvest!
Welcome to Child Abuse Awareness Month 2016!!!!!