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Loudoun’s Trauma-Informed Community Network Responds to School-based Peer Sexual Abuse 

November 17, 2021

 

We are all responsible for keeping children safe in our community. In the wake of the recent peer sexual assaults, the Loudoun County Trauma-Informed Community Network (TICN), stands with community members seeking transparent processes that prioritize the privacy and recovery of children who experience sexual abuse.

It is time to bring trauma-informed approaches to all organizations working with children, whether they are victims or children who have harmed.  Our task as adults is to learn how we can prevent harm that leads to childhood trauma and provide protective factors that foster recovery and build lifelong resilience.

Loudoun’s TICN is one of 27 multidisciplinary networks throughout Virginia committed to building a more resilient community.  Over 60 TICN members representing multiple sectors including social work, education, mental health, advocacy, faith communities, and healthcare work to make the services and programs of their organizations responsive to the trauma adults and children may have experienced.

Trauma-informed approaches call for us to stand with victims and survivors of sexual abuse, and to know the facts of risk and vulnerability.  Research tells us up to half of all sexual abuse experienced by children under 18 years old is perpetrated by another child.  We also know LGBTQ+ individuals are no more likely to sexually harm but far more likely to be harmed.  Knowledgeable adults create spaces that make all children safer.  To learn more about definitions and indicators of all forms of abuse visit scanva.org/abuse.

We must work together to make our organizations and neighborhoods safer for all our children.  The Loudoun County TICN is open to anyone who lives or works in Loudoun County.  We meet virtually on the third Wednesday of the month at 12 pm and welcome organizations, professionals, and community members to join us.  To sign up or learn more, visit scanva.org/ticn.

For trauma-informed support following an experience of sexual abuse, please seek help.  Local and national anonymous hotlines include:

  • What’sOk for children and adults is a hotline for questions or concerns related to the sexual abuse of children. Use the link for live chat with a counselor or email form, text WHATSOK to 1.888.532.0550 to text, or call 1.888.PREVENT (1.888.773.8368) by StopItNow!
  • RAINN National Sexual Assault Hotline for adults to chat live using the link or call 800.656.HOPE (4673). Available 24 hours a day.
  • Virginia Family Violence and Sexual Assault Hotline at 800-838-8238, text 804-793-9999, or chat online. Available 24 hours a day.
  • LAWS Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services, 703-777-6552, serves adults and children across Loudoun County.

 


The Trauma-Informed Community Network (TICN) of Loudoun County is one of 27 TICNs across Virginia dedicated to preventing trauma and supporting those who have experienced adverse childhood experiences (ACEs). We are a diverse group of professionals, partners, and community members working to support the successful implementation of trauma-informed care initiatives across health, human services, and education systems.  Our shared mission is to foster a community resilient to trauma, that promotes health, healing, and compassion through collaboration, education, and community engagement. The Loudoun TICN is facilitated by SCAN of Northern Virginia.

 

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