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Front Page » May 10, 2011 » Emery County News » Bikers against child abuse outreachBikers against child a...
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Bikers against child abuse outreachBikers against child abuse outreach


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By PATSY STODDARD
Editor

The BACA club hosted a luncheon on April 29 to educate interested parties in the role BACA plays in a community in being child advocates against child abuse. BACA stands for Bikers Against Child Abuse. You can recognize BACA members by their vests with the BACA symbol which denotes a fist. The clenched fist is saying symbolically that child abuse has to stop.

"Little T", Ted Allen explained the workings of BACA. He said BACA wants to take the streets back to make the world safer for children. It is an organized way to fight child abuse. The first BACA ride consisted of 27 riders. It was organized by John Paul "Chief" Lilly. Since its inception BACA has grown to a worldwide organization. Lilly is a licensed clinical social worker and most of his 20 years in practice has been dedicated to the treatment of abused children. He organized BACA to fill a need for abused children to help keep them safe. BACA also provides funding for therapy to help abused children to heal. BACA members become a guiding light and force in the abused child's life. The BACA members become family to the abused child. The BACA members will attend court proceedings with their "adopted" children and offer support and assistance in any way they can. BACA works to keep the child safe from all sides. When a child is adopted by BACA the children will receive their own jacket. They will receive visits from their BACA friends. BACA friends become a physical presence in the neighborhood. BACA members are to be trusted. They raise money and raise awareness for child abuse. They believe children have a right to be happy. Oftentimes with the support of their BACA friends, an abused child is able to testify in court and help obtain justice for themselves and take someone off the streets so the abuse doesn't happen to another child. BACA helps empower children. Children will receive counseling so they can get past the abuse and move on with their lives. BACA believes their fight against child abuse is a war. Statistics show that in a child's life that one in three girls are abused and one in five boys are abused. It is an epidemic. Seventy percent of abused children are under the age of 10.

BACA kids light up when their BACA friends come to visit them and be involved in their lives. The love of BACA encircles the child to help them feel safe. There are 17 members in the Southeastern Utah BACA chapter. There are 11 chapters throughout Utah. Chapters are also in Australia, Italy, Netherlands, Belgium and coming soon to Canada. All BACA members must pass a background check and ride with the club for two years, then the prospective member is voted on by the group. That way they get to know a person before they are allowed into the group. Utah chapters guidelines and standards are the most stringent of all the chapters. All BACA members go to visit their children in groups of two.

BACA accepts referrals for their services. Children can be recommended by parents, social services, police organizations, church organizations and anyone knowing of a child in need can recommend that child for help. Call 435-637-2236 for a referral or to learn more about BACA.

Allen said, "We empower children and help them to get back to being kids. We help break the chain of abuse so healing can take place."

Allison Allen said, "We are there for the kids. We help them with the funding for the therapy they need. Sometimes this might include traditional therapy, but it might be a day at the spa, horse riding or whatever it takes for that child to heal. All of the children are different. BACA also helps with service projects such as helping people move or relocate."

All of the child's information is kept confidential. If a child feels inclined to talk to and confide in BACA volunteers, then they are often referred to someone who can help them.

BACA is not a motorcycle club. All members pay their own expenses. There aren't any fees or dues. They are active in the community and hold fund raisers. They fill a void between the justice system and the child.

BACA is making a difference in the children they support. These children experience improved self confidence, diminished regressive behavior, increased feeling of safety, empowerment to testify, better communication, reduced feelings of guilt, decreased negative behaviors, a sense of belonging, acceptance, independence and more. BACA helps in the healing process to restore self worth and confidence. "To the world you may be one person, but to one person you are the world."

BACA is involved in several community projects throughout the year. They visit the local fairs and provide identification kits, fingerprints and pictures. They host a kids day at the fair, poker rides, helmet safety and many other fundraising events. They recently held a softball game and fundraiser to help the Green River boys and girls club.

If you have questions or a referral call 435-637-2236.

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