LIVONIA, Michigan – An event hosted during Madonna University’s Mission and Heritage Week in early October generated awareness of the plight of children, particularly young girls, who have been victims of domestic violence and sexual abuse.
Guest speaker Laurence Ligier, founder of the Chameleon Association, talked about the importance of helping girls rebuild their lives after they have suffered sexual abuse, quite often from family members.
Ligier, originally from France, now resides in the Philippines, where she began her work in the late 90s as a student.
Since 1997, in addition to the center in the Philippines, branches of the Chameleon Association have opened in Switzerland, France, and Luxembourg. They have assisted 900 children in getting education, with 282 of those going on to receive college undergraduate degrees.
“The Chameleon Association is a wonderful nonprofit organization whose mission aligns with Madonna’s,” said Djennin Casab, director of Service Learning and Civic Engagement. “They are doing phenomenal work to help those who need it most. I see many opportunities for Madonna to partner with Chameleon, such as internships, donation drives, awareness campaigns, etc.”
Ligier is working to open another center in the city of Silay, Philippines where Chameleon will work directly with the community to deploy the child advocacy program to create what she calls “The Chameleon effect” in which children can grow and build a better future together.
Madonna University, known for its commitment to service learning, has sent students, staff and faculty to Silay City to work as volunteers and teach healthy-living and personal hygiene skills with women and children who are less fortunate.