Camila Jimenez – Protecting Youth and Children from Sexual Exploitation
Today we are bringing you a special edition of This Amazing Story, on a very important issue that too often gets ignored or downplayed.
Every year in March, the Province of BC declares Stop the Sexual Exploitation of Children and Youth Awareness Week, to raise awareness, and recognize the importance of supporting communities to develop prevention, education, enforcement, and intervention strategies to address the sexual exploitation of children and youth.
Sadly, the Sexual Exploitation of Youth and Children is a growing issue – with incidents of online sexual exploitation in Canada having risen by 88% just since the beginning of the pandemic.
So today we are going to talk about Sexual Exploitation – specifically the sexual exploitation of children and youth – and this is definitely not an easy conversation to have. But my guest today does an amazing job of making the topic more accessible.
Camila Jimenez, is a national leader in the issue of child and youth sexual exploitation, having worked for more than 16 years on preventing children, youth and families from being affected by this crime and supporting them when it does.
She manages Children of the Street, which provides more than 25,000 children and youth each year with the information and tools they need to keep themselves and their peers safe from sexual exploitation. Complimenting her work on the prevention of this issue, she has dedicated much of her career to running voluntary support services for youth in a variety of communities who are being sexually exploited.
Camila is a sought-after speaker, and has been called on to present at provincial, federal and international conferences, forums and events. She is a mom of two small children herself, so she understands the concerns of parents, and uses her in-depth knowledge of the issue to teach them how to keep their kids safe, both online and in real life.
I learned a lot during this conversation, and I think you will too. How to recognize some of the warning signs of sexual exploitation, how youth are groomed for exploitation by online predators, How to approach this difficult subject, whether you are a parent, a teacher, caregiver, or friend of someone who is at risk of being exploited – and in this digital age, that “at-risk” group includes pretty much everybody – and what you can do to help or how to find support if you or someone you know is impacted by sexual exploitation.
The critical thing I learned from Camila is how important it is just to have these difficult conversations, even if you might not know where to begin.
For more information, follow the links below:
Keep Kids Safe Online
PLEA Community Services:
Children of the Street
Making Sense with Sam Harris, Episode #213 – The Worst Epidemic
"Episode 24 Camila Jimenez – Protecting Youth and Children from Sexual Exploitation” was produced by Malcolm McMillan in association with the Vancouver Community Action Team for This Amazing Story. ©2021.
All Rights Reserved.
This episode was recorded and produced on the unceded lands of the Squamish, Musqueam, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations people.