ABUJA, Nigeria- Pathfinders’ #TakeMeOffMute™ anti-child sex abuse campaign launched in Nigeria’s capital city of Abuja on October 9, 2015.   To a crowd of close to a thousand school aged children, the program highlighted the implications of child sex abuse through drama, music, poetry and various speakers, including award winning Nollywood Actress and Director, Joke Silva and internationally renowned Women’s Rights Activist, Dr. Joe Odumakin.  Students were implored to raise their voices against child sex abuse and to shatter Nigeria’s culture of silence on the subject which has left millions (1/3 girls and 1/6 boys) with the shame and stigma of abuse.  Children were also empowered physically, emotionally and mentally, as they learned various martial arts techniques and were informed of their legal rights in the event of an assault.  Seasoned speakers also advised on how to guard one’s mind and fearlessly move forward post child sex abuse.  Musical guests and Pathfinders Ambassadors, Freke Umoh and Mark-T Mgbor, delighted the students with moving renditions of their songs “Let Your Love Be Loud” and “Beautiful.”

Following the program, students who indicated a history of abuse received PATH (Personalized Action to Healing) Plans which include free counseling with trained psychologists, free medical care and free legal assistance.  An anti-child sex abuse training for teachers was also conducted post the campaign in an effort to empower them to identify and address child sex abuse.  #TakeMeOffMuteAbuja2015