Mar 232003
 
Authors: Cara Mason

The Wings Foundation, Inc., located in Lakewood, Colorado, has helped thousands of childhood sexual abuse survivors cope with the past.

“Thirty three percent of girls are sexually abused before the age of 18 and 16 percent of boys are sexually abused before 18 years of age. In most cases, the child knew the sex offender,” according to the Wings Foundation’s Information.

Wings Foundation was founded in 1982 with the goal to help heal the wounds of victims of sexual abuse and incest.

This foundation is a non-profit organization and was once a small group of women interested in helping themselves cope with their past childhood sexual abuse. Now, the foundation is flourishing helping people from all around Colorado.

The program provides educational presentations, professionally facilitated peer support groups and advocacy to adults throughout Colorado.

“Childhood sexual abuse has a huge impact on an adult’s life. Many times people have problems in relationships. We are here to help them find a way to have a happy and healthy life,” said Jennifer Eyl, executive director of the Wings Foundation.

Last year this foundation served about a thousand people throughout Colorado.

There are many people that suffer from childhood sexual abuse. Sexual abuse occurs when a person’s physical or emotional self is violated through sexual actions, according to the Wings Foundation.

“Sixty one percent of female sexual assaults occurs before the age of 18 and 83 percent of sexually abused boys are under the age of 12,” states the Wings Foundation.

There are support groups located throughout Colorado. Currently, a women’s group is being held in Fort Collins. There are about three women involved in the Fort Collins group, but the group is open to expanding, according to Eyl.

All childhood sexual abuse survivors interested in joining a Wings peer support group needs to contact the foundation for a brief telephone intake and attend a schedules orientation meeting. All groups meet weekly for a one to one-half hour discussion.

“Wings promotes healing through therapist facilitated support groups in which survivors are believed, accepted, and no longer alone,” said Mary Wyman, a Wings therapist.

For more information you can go to their website at www.wingsfound.org or call 1-800-373-8671.

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