One of the greatest things that I get to do every year is volunteer at a camp for abused children in the foster care system. It's called Royal Family Kids Camp
. The idea is that these kids get five days of freedom. They get to do the things they want to do, and have no fear of being hurt or molested. But during that week kids will open up to counselors and share about the things that have happened to them. But what happens when you never get to share those stories?
Matt Pipkin is your average, everyday, fun-loving pilot. But he hid a secret for 20 years. Matt was sexually abused at the age of five by a family friend. Matt never told anyone because of shame that really wasn't due him.
Many of the abused people I have talked to in my life often felt that it was their own fault, and therefor never felt that they could burden someone else with their shame. The truth is, abuse happens because the abuser has issues, not because the abused is "asking for it". Matt realized that he wasn't to blame, and last year began to seek counseling.
Over the past year Matt has pushed through his fear and guilt and has found freedom. Now he wants to share it with the world. Matt intends on flying a plane with his father for 65 straight days. Read about it here
. His goal is to raise awareness about sexual abuse.
But here's the kicker, my wife said, "Great. But what does raising awareness do?" She, like many others I have found, think that raising awareness doesn't fix problems. But the truth of the matter is this: The more people hear about it, and the more stories they hear where other people realized the abuse wasn't their fault, the more people feel they can open up about it.
Awareness is about people realizing that other people are going through the same things. This 65 day flight needs to be at the center of the press. And it needs
your help. I challenge you to blog about it, write about it, tweet about it, talk about it, and help. Give money, give a plane, give fuel, give sponsorship, or just give your love.
Helping this cause will help millions of people. People who need to understand that love is a real thing.
But, hey, I'm just a guy who likes to look at airplanes, so what do I know?