Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Child abuse survivor, filmmaker to speak at LGCC March 29 | PRCAC to host free screening of 'REWIND' documentary

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A world-renowned child abuse survivor and filmmaker will soon be coming to Granbury to shed light on sexual trauma and the necessity of child advocacy centers.

In conjunction with Child Abuse Prevention Month, Paluxy River Children’s Advocacy Center will be hosting a free screening of the award-winning documentary, “REWIND,” on Wednesday, March 29, from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. at the Lake Granbury Conference Center, 621 E. Pearl St.

Sasha Joseph Neulinger, director of the Emmy-nominated documentary, will be present to answer questions following the film and to serve as the event’s keynote speaker.

"REWIND” is a candid and personal documentary that centers around Neulinger’s childhood and the events that tore apart his seemingly perfect world.

While his father was constantly filming family celebrations and events, he was also unknowingly documenting a hidden family secret that eventually led to a media firestorm, a high-stakes court battle, and a generational reckoning, according to PRCAC’s news release on the event.

Now, Neulinger travels the world, sharing his story and providing a voice for children who deserve justice and healing.

“I think it is crucial that people are able to hear, firsthand, the impact that child abuse makes on not only children, but also their families and the community,” said PRCAC Clinical Director Shannon Engbrecht. “Sasha does an excellent job at taking attendees through his journey from deep hurt to growth and healing, and he is able to do so in a way that really assures us here at the Child Advocacy Center that we are doing work that is truly bridging the gaps that previously existed for children who have been victims of abuse.”

Julie Boudreaux, executive director of Children’s Advocacy Center of Southwest Florida, said in the news release that Neulinger shares his own experience of surviving multi-generational sexual abuse to allow outsiders to see the impact these abuses have on children.

She also added that “REWIND” sheds light on the necessity of children’s advocacy centers.

"In order to not be defined by their trauma, children require proper support,” Neulinger stated in the news release. “Trauma doesn’t have to derail the life of a child. With the support of Children’s Advocacy Centers, children can find immense strength, self-awareness, and confidence from confronting their trauma and the source of their pain head-on. If these children have the courage to speak up, then as the adults, we must have the courage not only to listen, but to do everything in our power to support them.”

The event is free to attend, and all registered attendees will also receive a free lunch provided by the PRCAC.

"We are very excited to bring this event to our community,” PRCAC Executive Director Margaret Cohenour said. “We have amazing sponsors that provided this opportunity. Sasha’s story can change people’s lives. I hope everyone will consider joining us for the screening of his documentary and Sasha’s presentation, sharing his story. We will provide lunch and then he will have a question-and-answer session.”

Event signature sponsors include the Hood County for Healthy Children Coalition, Comanche Peak Coalition, LDL Foundation, and Brian and Patricia Rosetti.

“We want our communities to know that not only is healing possible, but it happens every day at our center,” Engbrecht added. “Healing begins when our community members are able to see the reality of so many children in our community and know that they are able to do something about it to aid in the long-term healing of that child. We would love for anyone and everyone to come and join us in listening to the important message Sasha is sharing from the heart.”

For more information about the event, email PRCAC Outreach and Event Coordinator Lauren Rishel at lauren@paluxyrivercac.org.