Sexual abuse survivor creates 'It's Mine Movement' for at-risk youth in Philadelphia

Matteo Iadonisi Image
Thursday, November 12, 2020
Sexual abuse survivor creates 'It's Mine Movement'
"I want them to know that they have somebody." Camilla Williams is sharing her survival story to raise awareness of sexual abuse in Philadelphia.

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (WPVI) -- "Here I am," said Camilla Williams after a long journey to find where she belonged.

"I've lived a life and a journey that was purely dangerous," Williams said. From age 4 to 14, she was sexually abused by her father. As an adult, she is converting that trauma into an energy to help others.

"I asked God, you know, to show me my purpose and he told me it's not going to be in vain," she said, referring to her past. "I'm supposed to be out here servin the movement for the kids, you know."

The former medical biller lost her job during the pandemic.

"I knew that there was a chance that I could fall into a depression if I go from working every day to being home all the time and doing nothing," she said.

She woke up the next morning and kicked her novel non-profit into full gear.

Now, the "It's Mine Movement" is providing a platform for victims to become survivors.

Through partnering with similar organizations, Williams is able to connect with at-risk youth and lend an ear to their struggles. She is also able to connect these individuals with the appropriate resources to bring safety back into their lives.

Through fundraising, Williams hopes to create even more resources, such as community events and school seminars.

Recently, the It's Mine Movement held a back-to-school car wash fundraiser. On December 5th, they plan to host the "First Annual Survivors' Ball" to celebrate survivors in the area.

With COVID-19 restrictions and virtual learning now well-ingrained into everyday life, Williams and her partners fear that some children are stuck at home with their abusers.

State data obtained and analyzed by the 6abc data journalism team shows that child abuse reports are down by 22% for the first nine months of this year compared to last. In 2019, there were 3,878 child abuse reports from January to September. There were 2,658 reports within the same window during 2020.

Anyone in Philadelphia can report suspected abuse or neglect of children by calling the Department of Human Services at (215) 683-6100.

To learn more about the It's Mine Movement, visit their website.

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