Elizabeth Smart comes to Grand Rapids to advocate for change

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOTV)-On June 5, 2002 a family’s nightmare became a reality-and a story that shook the nation. Elizabeth Smart, a 14 year old girl, was abducted in the night from her bedroom in her family’s Salt Lake City home.For 9 months-her family along with  search parties across the nation looked for the young girl-who was held captive only 3 miles from her family home. After months of torture, starvation and assault, she was rescued by police officers on March 12, 2003.

Smart now works as an advocate to stop predatory crimes, and support law enforcement in helping to find other victims. Elizabeth Smart was recognized as the keynote speaker for the YWCA’s Open Circle Luncheon, to help educate others on what needs to change for children to live safely. Click the video above to watch her interview with Jordan Carson.

If you or someone you know needs help, hotlines and resources for the YWCA of West Central Michigan are below.

24-Hour Confidential Helpline

  • (616) 454-9922
  • Domestic and Dating Abuse * Sexual Assault * Stalking * Child Sexual Abuse
  • Call to schedule a sexual assault examination up to 96 hours post assault

Domestic Violence 24-Hour Confidential Helpline

  • (616) 454-9922
  • 24 Hours / 7 Days per Week

Main Business Office

  • (616) 459-4681
  • 8:30 AM – 5:00PM Monday – Thursday
  • 8:30 AM – 5:00PM Friday

Counseling Center

  • (616) 459-4652
  • 8:00 AM – 6:30 PM Monday – Thursday
  • 8:30 AM – 4:00pm Friday

Nurse Examiner Program

  • (616) 426-3725 (during business hours)
  • 8:30 am – 4:30 pm Monday – Friday
  • After hours, call 616-454-YWCA (616-454-9922) to schedule a sexual assault examination up to 120 hours post assault

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