Y’know how some kids with life-reducing ailments are granted “wishes” from the Make a Wish Foundation? And y’know how you read stories about these kids who want to go to Disneyland, to hang with their favourite celebrity, or be Batman in San Francisco? Well, whatever children in these situations want, they should get.
If you’re Lena Strickling from Alaska, you ask the Make a Wish Foundation to do a “photoshoot, article and video to encourage boys and girls to come forward about sexual abuse and domestic violence.” Lena is an 18-year-old young woman with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, and she’s an aspiring tattoo designer. But she and her sister were sexually abused by their father every day growing up, and they want to talk about it. And Make a Wish has given her, her sister and their friends the opportunity to do just that.
“You learn to read and write at a young age, and you learn to keep learning it and learning it as you get older, and you’re still learning it when you become an adult,” she tells Collectively. “It should be the same way with sexual education. It should start the minute you start school and it should never end.”
Watch Lena’s powerful video above, and share her inspiring message.