RSA NE held a very challenging event in Darlington on Tuesday 15th May exploring the topic of combating the sexual exploitation of children. Wendy Shepherd, who is on the frontline of Barnardo's efforts in the region, shared her experiences of what is really happening under our noses with a very provocative call to action.
I've put together a Storify record of the event at http://storify.com/JamieACooke/combating-the-sexual-exploitation-of... which has some of the tweets and comments from the evening. I was certainly left stunned by the pervasiveness of the problem, it is definitely something that communities and organisations need to be doing more about.
At the same time, I was proud of RSA NE for organising the event. This sort of challenge to society (followed up by a provocative event at the Newcastle Encounter the following evening) is exactly what we should be doing, changing ways of thinking and exploring solutions to these societal problems. Solutions around innovative (and common sense) design of public toilets sat alongside discussions of how statutory bodies and community organisations can, and should, be working better together.
We are a proactive Society, formed to not shirk away from the very real challenges and dangers that there are in our world, and I look forward to attending more of this in future.
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