Actor turned humanitarian Somy Ali’s Miami based NGO, No More Tears has been successfully helping and empowering survivors of human trafficking and domestic violence. Recently, they rescued seven kids and talking about it Somy shares how sad and difficult it is to see children being abused. Such abuses make for a darker and depressing future for them. She feels we need to address this issue now.
“Parents need to be more vigilant with their kids using online forums or even the old fashioned way of enjoying their spare time like riding a bicycle in their neighbourhood. It takes less than a minute for the predators and child molesters to grab a child and take off with him or her in their cars. It’s not just in the U.S., but it’s prevalent globally. In our culture no one wants to talk about it just like rape or domestic violence. It frustrates me to no end that while this goes on every single day people still don’t want to acknowledge how often it occurs,” she says.
Somy feels art should also highlight this pressing use through films, shows and series in order to make people more aware. It’s the need of the hour.
“We need more scripts on child sexual abuse. We need more movies like Monsoon Wedding which was the only time I watched this issue addressed. It will take a lifetime for the children we rescued to heal from the abuse. I know this personally because I have been there myself and one never forgets these incidents. But the first issue is to shed light on it and make it common practice to discuss it openly. Teach your children about stranger danger and how no one is allowed to touch their private parts. I don’t care how uncomfortable the conversation might be for parents, but it’s better than having your child endure sexual abuse. Whereas, if a child is aware, he/she is more likely to watch their backs and be careful when they are out and about playing or talking to someone behind a computer screen,” she adds.
Statistics, according to Somy, say that a child is sexually abused more than likely by someone they know like an extended family member or a parent’s friend who visits the home frequently.
“Without awareness this will go on with no end in sight. Remember a damaged child leads a damaged adult and they then engage in alcohol or drugs to numb their pain. Parents have a duty to stop their children from growing into broken adults. I am content that these children were rescued and are now safe, but I also know how they feel and years and years of work will go into their healing. That is if they even begin to heal in the slightest,” she shares.