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The 10th annual Yell & Tell: Stop Child Abuse Now Rally was held in Sylvania for its milestone anniversary Sunday.
Hundreds of people from the area came to Sylvania for the event that was held in the city for the first time at Lourdes University's Franciscan Center. Founder Pam Crabtree, a survivor of child abuse, has been spreading the message of the Holland-based organization throughout the Toledo area at the annual rally event held in a different location each year.
“The days of children being seen and not heard is long gone,” Mrs. Crabtree said. More than 23 community organizations provided area families information about how to empower their child to speak up when they are being mistreated or harmed physically, emotionally, and sexually.
“The communication between caregiver and child needs to be open, the child needs to feel comfortable going to his parent or caregiver saying this happened to me,” Mrs. Crabtree said.
Coordinator George W. Hayes rolled out Yell & Tell's new initiative that builds children’s confidence through sports. In exchange for providing uniforms and funds to baseball, boxing, or bowling leagues of child-focused organizations in the community, the children and coach will attend an educational session on child abuse prevention.
“Sports is a way to build self-esteem and discipline in our children,” Mrs. Crabtree said.
The keynote speaker, Chuck Ealey, a former quarterback for the University of Toledo, addressed the crowd on how to prevent abuse. The event included a 50/50 raffle held to generate funds for the organization’s programs, food, and musical groups.