“Hear me”: collaborating with youth to address sexual exploitation
at risk populations, youth, children, sexual exploitation, narratives, sexual abuse, intervention
Engaging with the youth as narrative inquirers as we collaboratively attend to sexual exploitation has required their collective, ongoing attentiveness to the complexity and layeredness of lives. Staying in this process of relationally developing interventions that attend to the lives of children and youth at risk for sexual exploitation, and that situate their experiences as leading change, has been a slow, gradual unfolding. This unfolding has required attentiveness to each of our multiplicities and the tensions present in both the meeting of our lives with one another's lives and in the meeting of our lives with dominant social, cultural, and institutional narratives that may, instead, encourage us, as researchers, to look away from or to silence the many long-term personal and professional relational ethical responsibilities that these relationships and this inquiry continue to shape. Perhaps the most significant contribution of our work is that we made the youth themselves central to the efforts of developing early interventions within the context of sexual exploitation. 'Hear me!' their voices continue to call us; their voices continue to work on us, on the youth, and our relationships with them.
Jackson, M.K., Caine, V., Huber, J, & Vastani, M. (2019). “Hear me”: Collaborating with youth to address sexual exploitation. In M. Diaz & B. Shepard (Eds.), Narrative Perspectives in Childhood and Adolescence. New York, NY: Columbia University Press. http://dx.doi.org/10.7312/diaz18478-006
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