Sunrise clients share intensely personal video accounts of abuse and healing

Sunrise Found Christy

The victims of abuse and neglect who come to Sunrise Children’s Services for care and shelter have sad stories to tell. Without a home, lacking the care and compassion of loving families, they seek the safety and stability that everyone deserves. Thanks to Sunrise and the grace of God, many of these stories have happy endings. Christy’s is one such story.

Christy expected she and her husband would grow old together. Instead, her marriage was destroyed by domestic violence, the family spiraling down into a nightmare of physical and emotional abuse. Christy lived for years fearing for her safety, and for her children’s wellbeing. In Sunrise’s most recent family services video, she talks candidly about her husband’s drinking and drug use, and the physical abuse she survived.

Speaking with raw emotion, Christy recounts harrowing stories of brutality. Her husband’s violent behavior escalated along with his substance abuse, which progressed from heavy drinking to dangerous drugs like bath salts. As his addictions altered his personality, he went from threatening to physically violent, leaving Christy battered and desperate. On one ominous occasion he told her, “Don’t worry Christy, it’ll only take a minute.” Fearful of what he might do next, she gathered her children and got away as quickly as possible.

Christy received the help she needed from Sunrise, and has started a new life full of promise. She is well on the way to earning a degree in social work, a career she chose so she could help others. Over the past year, Sunrise has also recorded the stories of clients Chris, Aaron and Jessie, all of whom escaped despair and victimization. Today, Aaron and Jessie are working toward degrees, and Chris is a member of the U.S. Marine Reserves.

“The accounts of Christy, Aaron, Chris and Jessie are truly stories of redemption” said Jake Pelfrey, video producer and regional area director with Sunrise. “The ‘Sunrise Found Me’ series aimed to bring into focus the personal transformational power of the gospel. At one point we were all lost but, through beautiful grace, God found us. Sunrise is a vessel to share hope and healing to those who are hurting. Although we were only able to film these four success stories, there are thousands of individuals with similar stories, all of whom Sunrise has helped.”

Learn more about the Sunrise Family Services program.

Jake Pelfrey