I am a survivor of childhood trauma, my perpetrators were too close, inside my home, and the abuse went unnoticed. I didn’t ask for it, yet I still have to experience the repercussions of it.

The day I filled out the form to attend The Haven Retreat I was full of tears and emotions. I didn’t know what to expect; the only thing I knew was that I couldn’t keep fighting alone. When the retreat day arrived, I felt a roller coaster of emotions. I got off the plane and waited, I was looking around trying to figure out who else was there, then we started gathering. Seeing so many faces and knowing that those women understood what I was going through without even talking, it was a feeling of comfort because I wasn’t alone anymore, there were more survivors like me!

Once inside the house, the outpouring of support I received, the classes, how spoiled I felt, and the closeness that I got with the group of ladies, are life-lasting experiences. I finally understood that my feelings are valid, that there is a path of healing, and it is not through denial but through each of the 5 Strategies to Reclaim Hope: Awareness, Acknowledgment, Power Through Surrender, Mindfulness, Faith.

My story is not over yet, it turns out that I was called to help others using the Finding Hope Support Group. So far, I have reached over 20 ladies in my community who aren’t feeling alone anymore, and I am planning on continuing to offer support for years to come.

I am grateful for the existence of The Younique Foundation, that keeps working constantly to educate people about the existence of childhood sexual abuse, and the commitment to help survivors during our healing journey.

-Johana, Survivor

Interested in Attending The Haven Retreat?