“WHITE BALLOON DAY – BREAKING THE SILENCE SURROUNDING CHILD SEXUAL ASSAULT”
NATIONAL WHITE BALLOON DAY is dedicated to breaking the silence surrounding child sexual assault – a crime that affects more than 58,000 Australian children every year.
Every 90 minutes a child is substantiated as having been sexually assaulted in Australia – that’s 1 in 5 children who are sexually harmed in some way before their 18th Birthday – a statistic that is totally unacceptable in Australian society.
The significance of White Balloon Day cannot be overstated.
For Lyndal, Bravehearts’ Ambassador and the woman who changed the course of Australian history through her landmark court case that exposed child sexual assault in Australian institutions and brought about Australia’s Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, breaking the silence means everything.
The church had denied her abuse for over a decade. In 1998, Lyndal was 21 when she broke her silence and sued Toowoomba Prep and the powerful Anglican Church that would lead to giving voice to thousands of victims who suffered while in the care of the church and other institutions.
“I didn’t do it for me. I did it for every victim out there. Society now demands that this crime against innocent children must stop and through supporting Bravehearts’ vital work, we can all help to prevent other children from enduring this crime that breaks little hearts and destroys lives,” said Lyndal.
While the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse has smashed the wall of silence surrounding cases of child sexual assaults in institutional environments the majority of these crimes are perpetrated by someone known to the child.
Hetty Johnston AM, Founder of Bravehearts said, “Now more than ever we must break the silence surrounding child sexual assault.
“We want people to ‘chalk about child protection’ and draw chalk balloons on pavements with messages of support for our children and adult survivors.
“By using chalk to draw balloons with a message of hope, people can be sure it’s environmentally safe and that someone who needs to see their message will see it,” she said.
Support White Balloon Day! Draw chalk balloons, make a donation at whiteballoonday.com.au or download Bravehearts’ FREE Personal Safety Parents’ Guide https://bravehearts.org.au/personalsafety