I was sexually abused when I was 7 years old on a Thursday night in 2010. For 2 years I did not tell anyone that a boy I trusted touched me inappropriately. In fact, my sister Breann who was sexually abused by our grandfather, helped me find my voice. She encouraged me to tell my mom and dad. I’m now getting the help that I need. The reason why I’m sharing my story now, is because I want to help other kids who are too afraid to speak. Don’t keep any secrets. If you keep secrets, people can’t help you.
I met Angela at a workshop she held at the Hope Project in 2012. I was funded to attend the Voice of Peace retreet that changed my life forever. For 20+ yrs I had carried a burden of a victim of sexual abuse. And like most “family secrets” it was swept under the rug. I had repressed all memory ; untill I was given information that the perpetrator had likewise assaulted a young girl, which triggered my memory and brought back a flood of pain. I learned through Angela that I had to find my voice. I sought the Lord on this matter and He presented the opportunity. I confessed all that had happened, and through tears and prayer God delivered me of my pain. That very night I felt the weight lift. The horrible burden I carried was as a mountain chained around my neck. As I gave my pain to Jesus, He delivered me of my suffering. God gave me strength and courage to speak , which robbed satan of power over me. There is power in confession! Though we sometimes suffer at the hands of others, it is not God’s will. God desires for believers to stand before Him without guilt, shame, or comdemnation. As though sin never existed. His power is readily available to ALL who call on Him. But the key is to call. To speak, to find your voice. Thank you Voice Today and Angela for your work, and may this testamony be as a love offering to you and a praise to our father.
I am a great grandmother who is still healing from childhood sexual abuse. I thought that I was one of three generations in my family that had been sexually abused; until recently when I was at lunch with one of my adult grandchildren and was excitedly telling her about Voice Today and that I was one of three generations that had been sexually abused and she corrected me by saying, “No Gram, it isn’t three generations, it is four!” She proceeded to tell me about the sexual abuse she encountered as a young girl. All to say, it’s gotta stop!!! I wonder how very different our lives could have been if we’d had available a means to have a voice. Generations of addiction of all sorts and violence and eating disorders and even suicide attempts could have been avoided. The good news is that there is recovery available today, and I have found that God can and does transcend all times and age with His wonderful healing powers. More recently I have been concerned about the next generation, my great grandchildren. I bought the book “Gracie Finds her Voice” and read it to some of my great grandchildren; a few weeks later the 9 year old said, That is a lot to think about.” Helping them learn that they should not keep secrets is a powerful tool. I am grateful for Voice Today and all the effort that goes into providing tools to protect our children and helping one heal from childhood sexual abuse.
Hi, My name is Breann Hill. I’m 11 years old. Last year over Spring Break, I was sexually assaulted. I wrote an essay on “My Greatest Fear”
My greatest fear happened last year, in 2012, over Spring Break. We went to Michigan to visit my grandparents. While we were there, on Saturday night, my grandfather sexually assaulted me. On Sunday, while my grandfather was giving a speech in church, I was wondering if what happened to me was a dream. I found out later, that it was real when it happened a second time on Monday night. On Tuesday morning, my mom came and sat down next to me. I told her, “I think someone touched me inappropriately.” My dad confronted my grandfather, and my grandfather confessed and said he did sexually assault me. We left immediately because of what happened. My father told me, “Breann, you’re my hero. If you hadn’t told us what had happened, it could’ve happened to Brooklyn or Morgan or Alexis. You saved your sisters.” I told my dad, “You’re my hero, too.” My greatest fear was telling my parents about what happened, but when I did, it wasn’t so bad. It wasn’t so bad because, at first I was scared to tell my parents but I felt I needed to trust my parents and tell someone so they could help me. It was my greatest fear because I didn’t want to get my grandfather in trouble, but I knew that he needed to be held responsible for his actions. I hope this encourages other children to tell your parents or an adult they trust about something that happened, no matter how bad the situation may be.
I believe that The Lord speaks;
I believe that The Lord cries;
I believe that The Lord loves;
I believe that The Lord gives;
I believe that The Lord takes away;
I believe that The Lord sees and I also believe that one day The Lord saw a need in the screams and cries
that he heard on earth. I believe that He answered the tear filled prayers of millions by delivering a blessing
that was caressed by a deeper love and an unknown strength to an unborn baby on earth.
I believe that The Lord appointed this soul to this baby and while in the womb, whispered to her a promise and
a blessing that, she shall have a courage and a strength that millions will have never seen. She will not only
be one of the survivors, but she will return, time and time again to reveal the path and lead the way out of the
blistering pain of child sexual abuse and show them how to heal.
I believe that The Lord only allows a few to have these precious gifts and blessings.
And I also believe that The Lord looked upon a woman as she slept and told her that she shall name her,
Angela Williams with Voice Today encouaraged me to remember an abuser’s name and then helped set up an interview with an assistant D.A. and Child Sex Crimes Detective who have chosen to open a case even though it happened a long time ago because I was a child when the incident occurred. The detectives are now pursuing a case and looking for more recent evidence against this individual who is in a position of incredible power in the community. I am thankful to Angela and Voice Today for supporting me and coordinating this effort as it is a great step in my healing journey.
March 28, 2012
Voice Today is a Light at the end of a Tunnel for Oh So many but I, being free from bondage of sexual abuse, and becoming a Board Member so I could help with those that were not I thought that was the reason God placed Angela Williams in my life. But just when you think you got it all together God shows you how much He pours his love on us. God gives as another reason to Praise Him. I sent Angela’s book to my daughter because she is a book writer. She read it in 2 days being a Wife, Mother, and Spiritual Mother to teenagers who’s parents were on drugs and or alcohol. Angela called me one day to tell me to call my daughter whom she had never met. Yes I found out my daughter whom I am close to had been sexually abuse and never told me. The man is Saved because I am Saved and that is why she never told me. If you know what I mean. But God works in Mysterious Ways as I not only work w/Voice Today to help the abused but I have a ministry to help the Predators and God set this ministry up not me but, it is done from my Heart. Voice Today is definitely used by God in Mysterious Ways and that’s just one of my testimonies. dgriggs to 90210
March 19, 2012
I am a mother, grandmother, spiritual mother to many., Duluth Ga
I am so grateful for all you have done here at Top of the Line Residential Care & Development inc! It’s been three visits now and you have really made a difference in the lives of so many, including my mother. They are all showing signs of healing and I’m sure with your continued prayer,support, and presentations, I know deliverance is nigh. Thank You again so Very Much. I look forward to you and your awesome volunteers return on the 29th of this month. May God continue to bless you in every area of your life, your business, and your ministry for him. You are truly walking in the vocation wherewith you have been called! Thanks!!! Dedicated to the Delivery of Service
Top of the Line, Georgia
March 18, 2012
I want to say, “Thank You” to all the volunteers, Tom Scale, our executive Director, Phil Williams, Deborah Griggs, Sara W. and of course our Founder, Angela Williams. I can not express enough gratitude for you all in so many ways. I have never felt more alive and free to share in my healing process. I thought that I was “good” and that I didn’t need any healing from my childhood abuse, I was wrong! From the moment that I walked through the doors of VOICE Today, I found a VOICE that I didn’t know that I needed or that I had. I didn’t know that I needed to share my voice, but I did and I have never felt so free. I know now that the power of a transparent life brings change and courage to those who need it the most. I am so honored to be working side by side with some of the strongest and most giving people that I have ever been around. Who give of themselves 100% to futhur the awareness, the healing and the protection of so many! What a blessing!!!
March 15, 2012
I am a wife of a chiropractor, mother of 5 and loyal helper in getting the VOICE movement going for our future generations, Milton, GA
I want to thank Angela Williams and Tom Scales for their incredible faith walk as Christians and being that VOICE for the silenced victims of child sexual abuse. VOICE Today brings to the forefront what no one wants to talk about in the larger community: child sexual abuse. But we all need to step up and take a part in this fight. The statistics are astounding, 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused before their 18th birthday. That is UNACCEPTABLE. And that means that survivors and victims alike of child sexual abuse walk among us as our brothers and sisters and members of our community, our churches, they are everywhere. Angela and Tom, both survivors of child sexual abuse, are my inspiration to do more as a mother, wife and citizen to protect children from all forms of sexual abuse. The Truth is that, as scripture says, when we refuse to help the least of these our brothers and sisters, we are refusing to help Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. Voice Today and Angela and Tom’s own testimonies remind us that we ALL have a role to play in preventing child sexual abuse. The workshops that VOICE Today offers from A Time to Heal to Stewards of Children to Tough Talk to Tender Hearts are invaluable and a must learn for every member of our society. Innocent lives depend on us to do the right thing and step up and do more.
15 March 2012
Mother and VOICE Volunteer, Marietta, GA
I was sexually abused and molested from 4-11 years of age by family members. After that it seems like I sexually abused myself with demeaning internal dialog and poor boundaries. My relationship choices were a direct result of how I had been groomed to expect sex and relationships to be. I finally got a little secular counseling and discovered my faith in Jesus through a few key friends. I began to develop more appropriate boundaries and behave in a more honorable manner. I married an amazing man with a strong family foundation who showed me a better example of loving sexual relations. I became a mother of 2 wonderful sons but still suffered with the mental images that would invade the intimacy between my husband and me. Finally, in 2011 I attended a VoiceToday.org “Voice of Peace” retreat and found my ultimate healing and empowerment to take those images captive and leave them at the Sapphire Cross for Jesus to avenge on my behalf. Thank you Voice Today friends for helping me harness the power of HOPE. I no longer suffer. I am no longer a survivor. I am Victorious! I look forward to volunteering with you and helping others find the peace and joy that I now have.
March 14, 2012
I am Victorious!, Atlanta
I want to say thank you to Tom Scales and Angela Williams and all the people at Voice who are working diligently to return the stolen voices of victims. My story is one of many and I share it today as a victor over child sexual abuse. A few months before my 30th birthday the memories of the abuse I suffered, as a very young child, began to plague me. All of the guilt, hurt, shame and fear that I worked so hard to cover up began to reappear. I pride myself in being a logical person and I decided to deal with all of these emotions and memories logically. So, as if I were checking off a grocery list, I started the journey of recovery. Admit that I had been abused. Check. Talk to a sexual abuse counselor. Check. Disclose the truth to those close to me. Check. The problem was that when everything on my list was checked off I was still experiencing depression, anxiety, excruciating physical symptoms, and bouts of uncontrollable crying. It had been almost a year after my 30th birthday and I had seen little progress, in fact I was getting worse. Sunday, September 19, 2010 during a service I told God I was done and could no longer go on. I was too afraid to take my life but I didn’t know what else to do. The next morning I went in to work and to everyone else I know I looked normal but emotionally I was hanging on by a thread. As I was putting out mail I stopped to see what one of my co-workers wanted because she met me at my desk as soon as I came in requesting that I come and see her. She began to cry and told me about a man(Tom Scales) that she heard speak over the weekend. She handed me a book (From Sorrows to Sapphires) and explained that they were having a retreat this weekend. She gave me a number to call and I rushed home at lunch to call. The lady I called was very professional(Angela Williams) and explained all that I would need to do to go. The Lord worked out every detail and Friday, September 24 I took a 5 hour drive to John Tanner State Park. The last line in my journal before I went was “God Help! God Help! God Help!” From the moment I arrived I felt the hold that the enemy had on my heart loosen. I now know that there were many people praying for the events that would take place at this precious cabin in the woods. The only way to explain the way I felt was to imagine a person screaming, kicking their legs and flailing there arms on the inside while trying to keep their composure on the outside. Angela and all of the women were very kind and helpful but that first night was a rough one. The following morning we all woke up to the news that one of the group leader’s mother, a woman who spent her last hours on earth praying for the women at this retreat, had gone on to be with the Lord. I have never met this woman but I look forward to seeing her in heaven. It is hard to explain everything that happened that morning but the Lord allowed me to tell the truth about my abuse and my feelings towards my abusers and that TRUTH made me FREE!!!!!! As these women poured love and prayers over me, I began to experience a true healing that my checklist could never accomplish. That weekend was THE turning point in my life I felt a freedom and love that I had never known. This journey has not been easy. I have cried but I have also laughed. I have had pain but I have had love, joy, and peace. September of 2011 I had the great honor of returning to my “precious cabin in the woods.” I was permitted to pour my love and prayers on a group of very special women as a group leader. I had the rare privilege of being a witness to the miracle of Abba Father’s love covering these women. And God, the Lover of my soul, took this time to speak life to the dreams that He placed inside me. There is nothing that I did so special, there is nothing that I said so great for me to deserve to be delivered from my pain. God delivered me because of His love for me. That same love and this same deliverance is available to YOU!!!
January 20, 2012
It is wonderful to have like minded organizations feeding into the lives of people in crisis. We are grateful that we know well the work of Voice Today and can say with confidence that their efforts are consistently genuine with a heart of compassion infusing their passion for wholeness toward hurting individuals. With great joy,we those who work through us, will continue to support and give room to their “voice” in hopes that many others others will be heard and healing may infuse our communities. All to His glory and magnification, Candace Huffmaster.
October 4, 2011
Founder of Kaleidoscope Butterfly, Inc which is a non profit supporting environments of DV and Crisis in General., US
I was honored to be able to assist in the healing process of 16 adult child sexual survivors at the Voice of Peace Retreat at John Tanner State Park. What an amazing and awesome time we experienced. These special ladies began the weekend with fear, anxiety, bitterness, brokenness and much, much more. As the weekend progressed we began to see the healing begin. Slowly for some, very quickly for others, the Holy Spirit got a hold of their spirit. Healing happens in many ways, and for these ladies, it began and ended with TEARS. As the Holy Spirit ministered tears began to flow. These were tears of sweet release and of turning the faucet on so that He could change those tears of hurt and pain INTO tears of hope, love, compassion and faith. God did an amazing work in all of us, including those of us, like me, who were allowed to give of ourselves to minister to these women. I believe that I continued my healing process that weekend by being able to share where I was and where I now am. God is the author and finisher of our faith. He is wanting to do a work within each of us. He meets us where we are and travels that road alongside of us. Sometimes during that weekend I felt him carrying me as I wept with joy and thankfulness for His healing and compassionate spirit. I experienced such sweet worship and unity that was transported into each lady at the retreat. I am indeed grateful for this experience and want to be included in many more areas of ministering the love of God which passes all understanding.
October 4, 2011
Facilitator for VOICEtoday, Rentz, Georgia
I just want to start out by saying “Thanks so much” for coming to a little town called Cadwell, Ga.(smile). You did not think that Cadwell was too small of a town to come out and share that POWERFUL information with us. I must say that at first I didn’t think that I would be able to sit through the workshops because then I would have to relive in my mind those times when I was secretly and sexually abused. But after that first workshop I realized that if I had actually lived the abuse then surely I could sit through the workshops. I’m so grateful for all the things that I learned. Even when I’m watching a movie or show with abuse in it I start talking to the t.v. (like a crazy woman) telling the person who is being abused to scream NO!! or to tell someone until they believe what is going on. My life really has changed since those workshops for the better. I can process things better in my mind now and I don’t just have a pity party for myself anymore and I don’t think about it over and over like I used to do. My husband is also a survivor of child sexual abuse. Together we are helping each other in our healing process. So thanks again so much for coming to our church, but most of all thanks for giving me my VOICE back.
August 23, 2011
I just wanted to say thanks for your organization offering your time, knowledge, and life long experience to better educate my family, church, as well as myself on the overlooked topic of child sexual abuse. For so many years, I was unaware of the number of reported and unreported child sexual abuse cases right here in the county in which I reside until being employed by the Department of Human Resources. I was so much more educated on statistics, predators, and the signs to look for in a child who has been sexually assaulted after participating in your five week seminar. Please… continue the good work Jesus has ordained to make our nation more aware of what is going on right under our noses. Thanks again and God Bless!
Latasha L. Williams
August 23, 2011
DHS-DCSS Dublin Hub Child Support Agent II
Voice Today shared personal and professional experiences, provided handouts, and presented things I already knew from a new perspective. While their personal stories, of child sexual , took my breath away, their testaments of healing and recovery simultaneously inspired me. It is always inspirational to see someone with a broken past become a successful adult in Jesus Christ. I highly recomment Voice Today as trainers for professionals. volunteers and parents who work with and care about children.
Natasha M. Boston
August 22, 2011
Social Services Case Manager Laurens County Department of Family and Children Services, Dublin, GA Child Protective Services Investigator
Tunnel Hill U.M.C. partnered with Voice Today, Inc. to provide four workshops on how to understand the challenges, and give Godly support, compassion, and encouragement to survivors suffering from child sexual abuse. Awareness combined with education was our primary goal. We have a responsibility to our church and community to look carefully at all potential sources of child sexual abuse and to provide solid solutions to protect our children. Voice Today has provided us the tools and skills to encourage escape from this silent prison of pain to a path of victory and healing found in a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. We as Christians are called to disrupt the patterns of sexual offenders and to foster safe environments for the children of Tunnel Hill. I applaud Angela and Phil Williams, Tom Scales, Linda Michelle Trainer, Sanna Gilbreath (who brought Voice Today to Tunnel Hill), and all who came to the workshops. Thank you for your commitment to speak out and give a voice to those who have cried in silence for too long.
August 22, 2011
Pastor, Tunnel Hill UMC
Dear Mrs. Williams: I would like to thank you and your staff for your great work at the Seminar on September 25, 2009 thru September 26, 2009 at the Bagby Park Lodge in Fort Gaines, Georgia. The attendees are out doing as you told them being soldiers to stop the silence war for children who are victims of sexual abuse. Your story as well as your knowledge that was taught in our area was what we needed to know. Your seminar has given everyone a different outlook on how to recognize as well as ways to protect children. It also has helped our community partners within this community to work together to protect children. I truly believe you presence in our small community was worthwhile and your dedication to breaking the silence educated people and encouraged others to break the silence by dealing with sexual abuse that has occurred to them. We all hope that your mission as well as Voice today’s missions continue to flourish from state to state so children will be protected. Please keep us posted on your success. I hope you guys have much success at Callaway on October 16, 2009. Thank you, Tanika Ward, SSCM-ADV.
August 22, 2011
We are a very active family in our church and I volunteer at many school functions as well so I know most of the parents and friends of my children. I monitor text messages and I use SpectorPro to monitor online access to the internet. Being alert and making sure my kids are safe has always been the top priority for me. I would say that I’m very much involved and there’s very little that I don’t know about my kids. When I see a news report regarding child sexual abuse I wonder how does this happen in families if parents are really tuned in and watching their children. There must be issues in the home, otherwise how would a parent not know what’s going on with their child. Several months ago, while monitoring my 17 year old daughter’s computer, I found a message from her stating that she had been molested by our neighbor, a boy her same age, from about age 6 through middle school. Were there ever signs? Did I attempt to understand or get help when I saw the signs? Yes, there were signs. Yes, I attempted to get answers and find the problem. The problem was that she never told and I was not trained to recognize the symptoms. Never in a million years would I ever have thought such a thing would happen to my child. As in-touch and proactive as I thought I was, I missed it. I wish I had been given access to testimonies such as these 20 years ago, before I became a Mom. I wish all victims could have the courage to come forward and tell their story to help educate us all. I wish everyone in our community would step up and make a commitment to face this issue and the statistics so that we can begin to stop this madness. I wish I had been given the opportunity to attend workshops and learn how to prevent abuse, recognize the signs of sexual abuse, how and when to talk about healthy sexuality and what to say or most importantly what not to say if a child discloses their deep dark secret. If I had been given the chance to attend these workshops 20 years ago, would I have gone? Would I have taken two hours out of my busy schedule each week for these classes? I cannot answer that question because that time in my life has passed. I can tell you this, today I would give anything in the whole world to go back in time and get any little piece of knowledge that would help eliminate the possibility of the events that took place right under my nose. Over the last year I have attended each workshop offered by VOICE Today. Never again will I be caught off guard, untrained or uneducated about this subject. The workshops are not just books and lectures from a podium, you will see and hear teenagers, adults and detectives tell their amazing stories. With a child in middle school, the reference book on internet safety has been a blessing in my home. We now take every opportunity available to talk about healthy sexuality. I would highly recommend these workshops to every person that knows a child.
August 22, 2011
As a pastor, it was a joy for me to bring these conferences to my congregation. I was completely amazed at the number of my people who had been exposed first hand to child sexual abuse. Because of the loving, non-judgmental and compassionate way that these issues were handled, many in my congregation experienced a great healing. All pastors should invite VOICE, step back and watch God work!
May 18, 2011
Pastor, Cadwell, GA
I took all four of VOICE’s workshops and was so sad to see them end because I felt less anxious and more and more empowered as a parent in each one. Each one taught me something new and vital: Stewards of Children taught me how vulnerable our children are to sexual abuse. It also awakened in me a new found responsibility to protect and look out for not just my children, but those that are around me wherever I go. It reminded me that as a Christian, God calls us to protect the children. However, the most crucial lesson was that we, and that means ALL adults, are responsible for preventing and ending child sexual abuse; children should never be assumed to take on that responsibility or to have to bear that burden. Internet Saftey 101 taught me that one of the most dangerous weapons available to a predator is the internet and that one of the biggest risks to my children’s safety is in my own home: our computer. It empowered me to take specific steps to safeguard my children and my entire family from the effects of an increasing “all access” digital world. Tough Talk to Tender Hearts taught me that I had no clue how to even begin to talk to my children about their bodies and healthy sexuality. It gave me the tools to begin the ongoing conversation with my children about personal boundaries and empowering my child to say “no”. Time to Heal healed me. Enough said.”
April 6 2011
Thank you so much for today! I deeply appreciate what you are doing for all of us! I would NEVER EVER had thought so deeply about such a vile and vicious problem in our society if it weren’t for what I have learned in the past 2 workshops! THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!”
March 6, 2011