Rebekah wants to stop child abuse
Tokoroa’s Rebekah Smith is on a mission to save our children from child abuse.
Mrs Smith is the Tokoroa Jigsaw ambassador. Jigsaw is a social service organisation that works to stop child abuse, neglect and family violence.
On Saturday Mrs Smith and a group of supporters held a sausage sizzle to raise funds for Jigsaw’s work.
All money raised will be distributed within the town and a meeting will be held with the public as to where the almost $ 10,000 should go.
‘‘ We will be holding a community conversation so anyone in our community can come on board and help decide how we can best use this money.’’
Mrs Smith said her campaigning had helped ease the door open for people to discuss child abuse, a subject which was sometimes avoided.
‘‘It is a sensitive subject but we must talk openly about it and look at ways to reduce our statistics. We must act now to protect our district’s children.’’
Mrs Smith, a mother of three was inspired by her father to help children.
‘‘My dad worked for a Christian child and family support service called the Open Home Foundation. We had foster kids come through home and many of the children had suffered abuse. It had a profound effect on me. It made me realise how hard some children have it. Since then I have always wanted to help.’’
Mrs Smith is also running the New York marathon later this year to help raise money for Jigsaw operations.
Jigsaw national project manager Sally Christie said the organisation was extremely proud of the work Rebekah had done.
‘‘Her tireless work to not only raise awareness but also money for Jigsaw has been amazing. Jigsaw are pleased to make Rebekah an ambassador of our organisation. We will continue to support the great work Rebekah is doing.’’
FOR THE CHILDREN: Rebekah Smith and Sally Christie turn sausages to raise funds for children.