When Alissa was just eleven years old she was sexually abused for the first time. The pain and hurt she felt was unimaginable. She hated coming home and had many thoughts of suicide. Today she is the Founder and Director of SWV, Survivors with Voices. SWV is a non-profit foundation created in 2012 to help individuals cope with the affects of sexual abuse.
As a child Alissa’s parents went through a divorce. Her mother was not financially stable and made the decision to lease their basement. The room was rented by a man who would eventually take advantage of her. For months she tried to deal with the abuse alone before finally confessing to a friend and counselor. When the news got to her mother it was obvious she was not happy Alissa shared her story. It would be years before Alissa discovered that her mother had also been abused and was still dealing with her own issues.
Alissa spoke to AskKirbyCarroll.com about how SWV has greatly and positively changed her life. She has written two books that talk about her story. One is a novel, the other is a workbook on how to remove the anger of abuse. Writing has been very therapeutic for her. In fact, in order to truly forgive her mother and move forward she wrote her a letter. She recommends this tactic to anyone having issues with forgiveness. Her mother has passed away, but they mended their relationship before her death.
April is National Sexual Abuse Awareness month. SWV has composed a campaign called “Survived and Revived.” The campaign will consist of self defense classes, webinars, testimonies and more.
There are chapters in numerous cities including Orlando, Cleveland, and Houston. We can help their efforts by participating in the campaign and purchasing the books and merchandise on http://www.survivorswithvoices.com/ .
You never know what people are going through or where they’ve been. I admire individuals who transform their pain into power to help others. How can you use your story to help someone else? Sometimes simply being an ear to listen speaks volumes.
Alissa advises anyone who has been abused to speak to someone you trust and reach out to the foundation.
Stay In Touch With Alissa at the plugs below.