Virtual Advocacy – Child Victims Act

Thank you for your dedication in protecting children from sexual abuse. In
the state of New York, 150 children are sexually abused every day, and outdated laws are doing nothing to help them. YOU can change that, but time is running out. The Assembly nearly unanimously voted in favor of the Child Victims Act, AND Governor Cuomo approved, but now we are urging the Senate to bring the Child Victim’s Act to the Floor for a YES Vote. 

You can get the Child Victims Act passed now!

  1. If you live in New York, click here to take action.
  2. If you live outside of New York, click here and make your voice heard! 

Again, thank you for joining us in the fight for justice.

Sincerely,

Nikki DuBose and Gary Greenberg

protectnykids.org 

Messaging for Advocates (Outside of New York)

Senator’s contact info!  

Messaging for Advocates Outside of New York

On Twitter

 

  1. .@LeaderFlanagan The Assembly Republicans passed the #childvictimsact. Kids now looking to Senate GOP for same.
  2. .@LeaderFlanagan Protecting children from sexual abuse is the right thing to do. Please vote YES for #ChildVictimsAct

 

Calling Script

Senator’s contact info!

 

“Hi, my name is______________. I’m calling to urge Senator _________ to pass the Child

Victims Act because __________________________. I don’t live in New York, but passing

this bill is that important because children everywhere deserve to be protected. Not only is the Child Victims Act critical

to protecting kids, but it saves the state an enormous amount of money in costs related to abuse. (Optional:

You can reach me at_________________). Thank you for your time and I look forward to

seeing the Child Victims Act being signed into law this year.”

  

+++Note: You can modify the script to make it more personal to you. We want to be careful not 

to attack any lawmakers, but try to persuade them with the message of protecting kids+++

 

 

By Email

Senator’s Contact Info! 

 

Dear Senator (Insert Last Name Here),

 

A few sentences explaining why protecting children is so important to you. This can also be a few sentences relating to your personal story.

The Child Victims Act is here to protect children. Children, who right now, are being sexually abused. Every year, the CDC reports that 43,000 children in the state of New York are sexually abused. These children grow up to become what we call survivors, which cost the state hundreds of thousands in costs due to mental health, emotional, educational and physical damage. Shouldn’t we take steps to not only protect children, but save New York a tremendous amount of money in preventative care?

 

Thank you for your time. I urge you to vote YES on the Child Victims Act. Kids are depending on your support!

 

Sincerely,

Your Name

Organization (if applicable)

 

 

 

By Mail

Senator’s Contact Info! 

Please refer to my advocacy page for letters of support.

++++Note: You need to change S809/Omnibus Child Victims Act to Child Victims Act. 

++++++Again, Senate mailing addresses can be found here. 

 

 

 

Messaging for New York Advocates

Find your Senator here.

Messaging for New York Advocates

On Twitter

 

  1. .@LeaderFlanagan Protecting Children from sexual abuse is the right thing to do. Let’s compromise on a bill and pass #ChildVictimsAct.

 

Calling Script

 

“Hi, my name is______________ and I’m Senator ___________________ constituent.

I’m calling to urge Senator _________ to pass the Child Victims Act because __________________________.  The Assembly approves of this measure, and we need to come to a compromise on this issue now because 150 children are sexually abused every day in New York. Passing the Child Victims Act is so important because children everywhere deserve to be protected.   (Optional: You can reach me at_________________). Thank you for your time and I look forward to seeing the Child Victims Act being signed into law this year.”

 

+++Note: You can modify the script to make it more personal to you. We want to be careful not to attack any lawmakers, but try to persuade them with the message of protecting kids+++

 

By Email 

 

Dear Senator (Insert Last Name Here),

 

A few sentences explaining why protecting children is so important to you. This can also be a few sentences relating to your personal story.

 

The Assembly approves of this measure, and now children need your support! Let’s come to a compromise on this issue.  The Child Victims Act is here to protect children. Children, who right now, are being sexually abused. Every year, the CDC reports that 43,000 children in the state of New York are sexually abused. These children grow up to become what we call survivors, which cost the state hundreds of thousands in costs due to mental health, emotional, educational and physical damage. Shouldn’t we take steps to not only protect children, but save New York a tremendous amount of money in preventative care?

 

Thank you for your time. I urge you to vote YES on the Child Victims Act and be a hero for kids everywhere.

 

Sincerely,

Your Name

Organization (if applicable)

 

 

 

By Mail

Please refer to my advocacy page for letters of support.

Note: Please change S809 to Child Victims Act.

 

 

Senate List – Child Victims Act

Call, Write, Email and Urge these New York Senators on Social Media to PASS the Child Victims Act!

(D) Addabbo Joseph 159-53 102nd St. Howard Beach, NY 11414 (718) 738-1111 613 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2322 (518) 426-6875 addabbo@senate.state.ny.us
(R) Akshar Frederick 44 Hawley Street Room 1607 Binghamton, NY 13901 (607) 773-8771 805 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2677 (518) 426-6720 akshar@nysenate.gov
(D) Alcantara Marisol 5030 Broadway Suite 701 & 702 New York, NY 10034 (212) 544-0173 513 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2041 (518) 426-6847 alcantara@nysenate.gov
(R) Amedore George 721 Broadway Suite 100 Kingston, NY 12401 (845) 331-3810 802 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2350 (518) 426-6751 amedore@nysenate.gov Abuse @ guilderland school; voted no on floor in ’08 as an Assemblyman
(D) Avella Tony 38-50 Bell Boulevard Suite C Bayside, NY 11361 (718) 357-3094 902 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2210 (518) 426-6736 avella@nysenate.gov Support won’t co-sponsor
(D) Bailey Jamaal 959 East 233rd St. Bronx, NY 10466-3207 (718) 547-8854 707 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2061 (518) 426-6998 bailey@nysenate.gov
(R) Bonacic John 201 Dolson Avenue Suite F Middletown, NY 10940 (845) 344-3311 509 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3181 (518) 426-6948 bonacic@nysenate.gov
(R) Boyle Phil 69 W Main Street Suite B Bay Shore, NY 11706 (631)
665-2311 814 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3411 (518) 426-6973 pboyle@nysenate.gov voted yes on floor in ’08 as Assemblyman
(D) Breslin Neil 414 State Capitol Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2225 (518) 426-6807 breslin@senate.state.ny.us
(D) Brooks John 5550 Merrick Road Suite 205 Massapequa, NY 11758 (516) 882-0630 302 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2765 (518) 426-6925 brooks@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Carlucci David 20 South Main Street New City, NY 10956 (845) 623-3627 848 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2991 (518) 426-6737 carlucci@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Comrie Leroy 113-43 Farmers Boulevard St. Albans, NY 11412 (718) 454-0162 617 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2701 (518) 455-2816 comrie@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(R) Croci Tom 250 Veterans Memorial Highway NYS Office Building, Rm 3B-41 Hauppauge, NY 11788 (631) 360-3356 306 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3570 (518) 426-6741 croci@nysenate.gov
(R) DeFrancisco John 800 State Office Building 333 E. Washington Street Syracuse, NY 13202 (315) 428-7632 416 State Capitol Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3511 (518) 426-6952 jdefranc@nysenate.gov Oppose Opposes the window
(D) Diaz Ruben 900 Rogers Place Bronx, NY 10459 (718) 991-3161 606 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2511 (518) 426-6945 diaz@senate.state.ny.us Oppose He’s given mixed signals to advocates, told the Leader he opposes
(D) Dilan Martin 573 Metropolitan Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11211 (718) 573-1726 711B Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2177 (518) 426-6947 dilan@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Felder Simcha 1412 Avenue J Suite 2E Brooklyn, NY 11230 (718) 253-2015 944 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2754 (518) 426-6931 felder@nysenate.gov Oppose Opposed to complete elimination of civil SOL and window; position could change if Flanagan supports a bill
(R) Flanagan John 260 Middle County Road Suite 102 Smithtown, NY 11787 (631) 361-2154 330 State Capitol Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2051 (518) 426-6904 Flanagan@nysenate.gov Oppose
(R) Funke Rich Packetts Landing Suite 230 Fairport, NY 14450 (585) 223-1800 905 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2215 (518) 426-6745 funke@nysenate.gov
(R) Gallivan Patrick 2721 Transit Road Suite 116 Elma, NY 14059 (716) 656-8544 947 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3471 (518) 426-6949 gallivan@nysenate.gov
(D) Gianaris Michael 31-19 Newtown Avenue Suite 402 Astoria, NY 11102 (718) 728-0960 413 State Capitol Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3486 (518) 426-6929 gianaris@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(R) Golden Martin 7408 5th Avenue 1st Floor Brooklyn, NY 11209 (718) 238-6044 409 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2730 (518) 426-6910 Golden@nysenate.gov
(R) Griffo Joseph 207 Genesee Street Room 408 Utica, NY 13501 (315) 793-9072 612 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3334 (518) 426-6921 griffo@nysenate.gov
(D) Hamilton Jesse 1669 Bedford Avenue 2nd Floor & Mezzanine Brooklyn, NY 11225 (718) 284-4700 608 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2431 (518) 426-6856 Hamilton@nysenate.gov
(R) Hannon Kemp 595 Stewart Ave. Suite 540 Garden City, NY 11530 (516) 739-1700 420 State Capitol Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2200 (518) 426-6954 hannon@nysenate.gov
(R) Helming Pamela 119 Fall St. Seneca Falls, NY 13148 (315) 568-9816 509 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2366 (518) 426-6953 helming@nysenate.gov
(D) Hoylman Brad 322 Eighth Avenue Suite 1700 New York, NY 10001 (212) 633-8052 413 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2451 (518) 426-6846 hoylman@nysenate.gov Support Bill Sponsor
(R) Jacobs Christopher 65 Court Street Rm 213 Buffalo, NY 14202 (716) 854-8705 946 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3240 (518) 426-6738 jacobs@nysenate.gov
(D) Kaminsky Todd 55 Front Street Room 1 Rockville Centre, NY 11570 (516) 766-8011 311 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3401 (518) 426-6914 kaminsky@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Kennedy Timothy 2239 South Park Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14220 (716) 826-2683 506 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2426 (518) 426-6851 kennedy@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Klein Jeffrey 1250 Waters Place Suite 1202 Bronx, NY 10461 (718) 822-2049 913 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3595 (518) 426-6887 jdklein@senate.state.ny.us Support co-sponsor
(D) Krueger Liz 1850 Second Avenue New York, NY 10128 (212) 490-9535 808 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2297 (518) 426-6874 lkrueger@senate.state.ny.us Support co-sponsor
(R) Lanza Andrew 3845 Richmond Avenue Suite 2A Staten Island, NY 10312 (718) 984-4073 708 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3215 (518) 426-6852 lanza@senate.state.ny.us Oppose Opposed to the window only
(R) Larkin William 1093 Little Britain Road New Windsor, NY 12553 (845) 567-1270 502 State Capitol Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2770 (518) 426-6923 larkin@senate.state.ny.us
(D) Latimer George 222 Grace Church Street Suite 300 Port Chester, NY 10573 (914) 934-5250 615 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2031 (518) 426-6860 latimer@nysenate.gov
(R) LaValle Kenneth 28 North Country Road Suite 203 Mount Sinai, NY 11766 (631) 473-1461 806 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3121 (518) 426-6826 lavalle@nysenate.gov
(R) Little Elizabeth 5 Warren Street Suite 3 Glens Falls, NY 12801 (518) 743-0968 310 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2811 (518) 426-6873 little@nysenate.gov
(R) Marcellino Carl 250 Townsend Square Oyster Bay, NY 11771 (516) 922-1811 811 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2390 (518) 426-6975 marcelli@senate.state.ny.us
(R) Marchione Kathleen 1 Halfmoon Town Plaza Halfmoon, NY 12065 (518) 371-2751 918 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2381 (518) 426-6985 marchione@nysenate.gov
(D) Montgomery Velmanette 30 Third Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11217 (718) 643-6140 903 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3451 (518) 426-6854 montgome@senate.state.ny.us Support co-sponsor
(R) Murphy Terrence 40 Gleneida Avenue 3rd Floor Carmel, NY 10512 (845) 279-3773 817 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3111 (518) 426-6977 murphy@nysenate.gov
(R) O’Mara Thomas 105 East Steuben Street Bath, NY 14810 (607) 776-3201 307 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2091 (518) 426-6976 omara@nysenate.gov Oppose Opposes suing institutions; voted no in ’08 as an Assemblyman
(R) Ortt Robert 175 Walnut Street Suite 6 Lockport, NY 14094 (716) 434-0680 815 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2024 (518) 426-6987 ortt@nysenate.gov
(D) Parker Kevin 55 Hansen Place Suite 650 Brooklyn, NY 11217 (718) 629-6401 604 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2580 (518) 426-6843 parker@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Peralta Jose 32-37 Junction Boulevard East Elmhurst, NY 11369 (718) 205-3881 415 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2529 (518) 426-6909 jperalta@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Persaud Roxanne 1222 East 96th Street Brooklyn, NY 11236 (718) 649-7653 504 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2788 (518) 426-6806 persaud@nysenate.gov
(R) Phillips Elaine 252 Mineola Boulevard Mineola, NY 11501-2421 (516) 746-5924 915 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3265 (518) 426-6739 ephillips@nysenate.gov
(R) Ranzenhofer Michael 8203 Main Street Suite 4 Williamsville, NY 14221 (716) 631-8695 609 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3161 (518) 426-6963 ranz@senate.state.ny.us Oppose Staff said the senator doesn’t believe victims should be allowed to sue in civil court
(R) Ritchie Patty Dulles State Office Building Room 418 Watertown, NY 13601 (315) 782-3418 412 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3438 (518) 426-6740 ritchie@nysenate.gov
(D) Rivera Gustavo 2432 Grand Concouse Suite 506 Bronx, NY 10458 (718) 933-2034 408 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3395 (518) 426-6858 grivera@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(R) Robach Joseph 2300 West Ridge Road Rochester, NY 14626 (585) 225-3650 803 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2909 (518) 426-6938 robach@nysenate.gov
(D) Sanders James 142-01 Rockaway Blvd. South Ozone Park, NY 11436 (718) 523-3069 508 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3531 (518) 426-6859 sanders@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Savino Diane 36 Richmond Terrace Suite 112 Staten Island, NY 10301 (718) 727-9406 315 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2437 (518) 426-6943 savino@senate.state.ny.us Support co-sponsor
(R) Serino Susan 4254 Albany Post Road Hyde Park, NY 12538 (845) 229-0106 812 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2945 (518) 426-6770 serino@nysenate.gov
(D) Serrano Jose 1916 Park Avenue Suite 202 New York, NY 10029 (212) 828-5829 406 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2795 (518) 426-6886 serrano@senate.state.ny.us Support co-sponsor
(R) Seward James 41 South Main Street Oneonta, NY 13820 (607) 432-5524 430 State Capitol Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3131 (518) 455-3123 seward@nysenate.gov
(D) Squadron Daniel 250 Broadway Suite 2011 New York, NY 10013 (212) 298-5565 515 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2625 (518) 426-6956 squadron@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Stavisky Toby 142-29 37th Ave Suite 1 Flushing, NY 11354 (718) 445-0004 706 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3461 (518) 426-6857 stavisky@nysenate.gov Support co-sponsor
(D) Stewart-Cousins Andrea 28 Wells Avenue Building 3 Yonkers, NY 10701 (914) 423-4031 907 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2585 (518) 426-6811 scousins@senate.state.ny.us Support co-sponsor
(R) Tedisco James 636 Plank Rd. 1st Floor Clifton Park , NY 12065-2046 (518) 885-1829 711 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2181 (518) 426-6821 tedisco@nysenate.gov Voted no in “08 as an Assemblyman
(NA) Vacant Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247
S D Valesky David 805 State Office Building 333 East Washington Street Syracuse, New York 13202 (315) 478-8745 512 Legislative Office Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-2838 (518) 426-6885 valesky@senate.state.ny.us
(R) Young Catharine 700 West State Street Westgate Plaza Olean, NY 14760 (716) 372-4901 428 State Capitol Building Albany NY 12247 (518) 455-3563 (518) 426-6905 cyoung@senate.state.ny.us Oppose Opposes the window; voted yes on floor as Assembly Woman in ’08

Ex-state senator hired by Boy Scouts to lobby against Child Victims Act shows Albany swamp needs draining

When you’re a crook, there are no limits to the depths you will go to cover up your filth. Just ask most of the New York politicians, including former Senator Craig Johnson, who is a key ally and fundraising partner for the Independent Democratic Conference, led by Senator Jeff Klein.

Read the full article on NY Daily News.

a plus: Model-Turned-Activist Nikki Dubose Is Speaking Out Against Ineffective Sexual Abuse Laws In New York

Nikki Dubose says she won’t give up on her fight make kids safer.

The 31-year-old model-turned-activist has already made a name for herself by speaking up about sexual assault. Now, though, she’s taking the platform she’s built and using it to try and change laws to protect children from sexual violence.

Her first stop? New York, where she’s hoping to help push through The Omnibus Child Victims Act.

“In New York, they have the worst laws in the entire nation as far as protecting children from sexual abuse,” DuBose told A Plus. “There is only a five-year window after you’re 18 years old that someone can report what has happened to them.”

Read more on a plus.

Profit, Denial & Education: Why Clothing Retailers Are Contributing to our Youth’s Mental Health Issues and What Can Be Done to Prevent Further Damage

Denial and Profit

A part of me can’t believe that I am writing about clothing retailers and that fact that they are still selling “super skinny” and “toothpick” jeans – how long must we go around and around this issue and still see no change? Yet another part of me is not surprised at all; after all, the majority of people are not properly educated about mental health issues, especially eating disorders, and the goal of businesses, especially clothing retailers – is simply, profit.

This was a recent conversation I had with Christopher Willson, the Clinical Director from Dine Monte Nido, a unique outpatient program designed to help those suffering from anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder. Chris was furious one day when he went to buy jeans for his eight-year-old daughter and found that many of them read “super skinny!” Oh dear. Now, most businesses grasp that in order to keep their profits high they must act as good corporate citizens. Therefore, clothing retailers should listen to the cries of consumers, such as Chris, and incorporate changes that will in turn, make their customers happy. Let’s look at the bigger picture –  for example, all the parents who buy jeans from clothing brands that advertise them as “super skinny”- you can expect that there are going to be some downright angry moms and dads writing letters, calling and blasting their opinions all over social media. After all, these labels place unrealistic expectations on already impressionable minds. Let’s review some statistics:

“42% of 1st-3rd grade girls want to be thinner.

81% of 10 year olds are afraid of being fat.”

 

You would think that clothing companies would do their research on mental health and listen to the consumers who are unhappy about how these labels are affecting their kids and teens.  Anorexia nervosa has the highest mortality rate of any psychological disorder; certainly the higher ups and employees within the clothing companies must know someone who is or has been affected.

Or perhaps, they turn a blind eye, like this country has done for so long. Why? There are many reasons, but I would say that in the case of retailers a lack of education and focus on profit are the biggest culprits. To actually think about the well-being of others means to stop thinking about themselves, and to do that would (gasp!) would mean to potentially lose money, at least for the short-term.

I am relentless in advocating for change because eating disorders are an issue that affect over 30,000,000 people in America alone, and those are just the reported amounts. And, as a former fashion model who was always trying to fit into the fashion industry’s unrealistic sizes and portray an unhealthy image for impressionable minds, I am adamant about helping to restructure the business and stop the selling of products that are damaging to consumers. At the very least, we can start with mental health education – everyone needs it, especially the advertising and fashion industries.

Even if someone has not suffered from an eating disorder, almost everyone has been affected by low self-esteem and poor body image, however children and adolescents are particularly vulnerable; they don’t need added pressure from retailers telling them that they need to look a certain way in order to be accepted and valued. 

Finding the Solution

Lately I have been working with California Assemblymember Marc Levine, the National Eating Disorders Association, Sara Ziff from the Model Alliance and Dr. Bryn Austin, the director of Harvard STRIPED, on AB 2539, which will create healthier standards and promote the labor rights of models in the fashion industry. One thing that has stuck out to me in reading Dr. Austin’s research is how crucial prevention is. As she puts it, there is not a whole lot of literature and research dedicated to preventing eating disorders. Tying into Dr. Austin’s research lies my main interest: mental health education in the workplace, particularly the modeling industry. When we educate, we can help to prevent. I think that back during Karen Carpenter’s unfortunate and highly publicized case, eating disorders became known and glamorized because of the media – it’s what they do, they sensationalize – but they have yet to educate the public properly about eating disorders and mental health in general.

The National Eating Disorders Association has been introducing literature on eating disorders into various workplaces. Education is power because when we educate we have the knowledge to understand the what, why, when, how and who. If clothing retailers are uneducated when it comes to eating disorders and the impact their marketing schemes are having on young people, and if they are only thinking about profit, then they will continue to contribute to the mental decline and fatalities of our youth. Focusing on prevention and education in the workplace are crucial steps towards changing the way retailers and advertisers approach consumers – especially our youth.

 

What are your thoughts? I’d love to hear them! Drop me a line – nikki@nikkidubose.com

 

 

 

 

My Survivor Story of Childhood Sexual Abuse — Peaceful Hearts Foundation

“I grew up in charming Charleston, South Carolina in the eighties and nineties. Its beautiful cobblestone streets were lined with gorgeous gardens and mansions that dated back well before the Civil War. At first glance, one would have not suspected that anything bad could have happened behind the wrought-iron gates and pastel-colored walls of the grand estates. But like all homes, each one holds a story, and ours was no different.

After the divorce, Momma and I moved into a modest, one-story home on a quiet street shaded by Spanish Moss trees. It was no mansion, but it was our dream, an escape into another world. I was only two, and Momma was nineteen, and more than she desired love, she wanted security. She soon found it in the arms of an older man who promised to love and protect us. Our home quickly expanded, and the idea of a ‘family’ was no longer a fantasy, it was real.”

Read more on Peaceful Hearts Foundation.

B.E.A.U.T.Y Project Art by Orlando

Beauty Project by OrlandoOrlando drew a peace sign, an angel heart with wings, and a happy/sad mask for the Beauty Project!

Orlando’s artwork is a fine example of the emotions in life we all go through.  Emotions should be welcomed and felt, as they help us experience life in a greater way! 🙂

Thank you, Orlando, for your positive drawing on inner beauty!

God Bless,
Nikki DuBose

B.E.A.U.T.Y Project Art by Jordan

Jordan sees beauty as being outside and playing in the fresh air, surrounded by nature and a dog, too! I think that that’s not a bad way to see life, what about you?

Beauty Project Art By Jordan
Beauty Project Art By Jordan

How about getting back to nature and reconnecting with the simplicity of what God has created?  Life is naturally beautiful; sometimes we just need to stop and pay attention.

Thank you Jordan, for your art and zest for creation!

God Bless,
Nikki DuBose

B.E.A.U.T.Y Project Art by Saunvvia

Saunvvia drew a big, happy heart surrounded by a rainbow and colorful dots!

Inside of the heart were positive words such as “love” and “harmony.” I suppose Saunvvia was trying to tell us that inner beauty is a reflection of all of the wonderful emotions we should focus on, right? 🙂 BeautyProject_Saunvvia

It’s not that we don’t experience the negative feelings, it’s just that the more we magnify the positive, the more the positive emotions will grow, and that makes us stronger!

Thank you Saunvvia for your deep insight and excellent addition to our Beauty Project!

God Bless,
Nikki DuBose

B.E.A.U.T.Y Art by Damien

Damien believes that “Beauty” is Without Words! I have to agree! What do you think? Perhaps the most meaningful things in life are only felt, and not seen?

Thank you, Damien, for your insight and creativity!

God Bless,
Nikki DuBose

B.E.A.U.T.Y Project Art by Elijah

Elijah lent his creative eye to the Beauty Project and drew Sonic the Hedgehog!BEAUTYPROJECT_ART_Elijah

Beauty can be expressed through art and however we choose to see it. Thank you Elijah for this incredible drawing of Sonic the Hedgehog, it’s fantastic!

God Bless,
Nikki DuBose

Mondays at the Mission B.E.A.U.T.Y Art

I was Blessed to be asked to speak to a very talented and special group of students at a Mondays at the Mission class which is held at Union Rescue Mission here i10557387_696745177065814_9206829365795818469_nn Los Angeles. Each and every student greeted me with open arms and warm smiles, and they taught me just as much as I had to tell them!

I opened up the class with my story about how when I was a little girl my dream was to be a supermodel because I thought that that was the greatest thing in the world! I imagined that a glamorous life filled with clothes, hair, makeup, and outer beauty would cover up all of the pain that I was experiencing in my home life.

I went on to explain to the10514750_696745340399131_4614670960225177032_nm that sometimes in life we are drawn to superficial standards of beauty and happiness because we are deeply unhappy with circumstances on the inside of us and around us. I told them that as a child I was sexually, physically, and emotionally abused by a couple of people close to me and that as a result I often felt afraid. I also isolated myse10478176_696745303732468_9223166261376901884_nlf as a child and young adult and never felt that I connected well with too many people. My mother died a couple of year’s ago from alcoholism so I felt detached from her growing up as well. On top of everything I was also hiding a big secret for more than seventeen years: I had an eating disorder that spiraled deeply out of control.

I grew away from God for many years of my life because I felt angry as a result of all of the things that were happening to me that were out of my control. I was often suicidal and I made many poor choices. I then explained to them that when I became a model, I had all of the material things that I thought that I wanted that would have made me happy, however all of the people who were around me only wanted to be with me because of my job and because of the way that I looked.

I learned throughout everything and all of my struggles that God always was there with me, even when I didn’t feel His presence, and that I could always rely on Him. 10524340_696745250399140_8240041549169040004_nI learned that true beauty came from the inside and that it was more important for me to share my hard times and be a role model for other people, than to place so much importance on my outer appearance alone. I now am determined to help others with their difficulties in life because I went through so many in mine.

The class went so well, and the students responded tremendously to the message that it is really what is inside that matters. They disc10517452_696745470399118_4765589994542415532_nussed all of the qualities that a role model should have such as believing in God, the abiltity to persevere, confidence, humility, helping others, and more! The students broke into several groups and each person drew a picture of what they thought inner beauty meant to them. I will be displaying their artwork right here on the B.E.A.U.T.Y section!

I think today we can get lost more than ever with all of the social media, television and hate in the world that we really need to just be still and…quiet. In the secret, private places of our hearts, we will find the answers to what really matters. Have we as a world complicated ourselves with too much? Does the answer to life really remain…love, inner beauty, and God, above all? I believe it does.

God Bless,
Nikki DuBose

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Fall Time Fun Back at Alstede Farms, NJ

Bunnies, cows, pigs, oh my!! I was in hog-heaven this Columbus Day weekend at Alstede Farms in Chester, NJ. Not only was the scenery surrounding the Fall-Festival breath taking, but the “scene” inside the park wasn’t half-bad either! From kiddies to pumpkin fudge (who knew?), animals galore to more Pick-Your-Own activities than you could shake a honey flavored stick at!!

I don’t know about you, but fall time is my absolute favorite time of the year. The beautiful colors on the leaves changing signal that the Holidays are a-comin’ and that the layers on my clothes will be a wrappin’!! I am so thankful for the beautiful seasons that God has created, but fall and winter have always been my favorite! You can be sure I will be blogging much more during this time as it brings back my childhood memories with my family, and I love to create that here on my website.