Collecting Baby Dolls to Fight Sexual Abuse

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Sandra Collins was sexually abused when she was just nine years old. She struggled with sexual violence relationships well into her adult life.

"I was sexually abused by my husband. At the time, you couldn't tell anyone what happened. There were no laws to testify against your husband in court," Collins said.

Then in 1997 she was abused by a jailer while in prison. After her release she decided to become an advocate.

In April of this year she collected 300 dolls for victims of sexual violence but decided it wasn't enough.

"I was reading the scripture that said, 'Jesus took two fish and five loaves of bread and fed 5,000.' And I said, 'If you gave me 300 you can give me 5,000," Collins said.

This Saturday at 9am the Walmart on N. Monroe St. will hold a kick off event for the 5,000 doll collection effort.

But why give baby dolls to the sexually abused?

"When you look in the eyes of a person who's been abused you can see the pain. You may not see what they covered up but you can see the pain in the eyes of a person. And that's what you see in a doll," Collins said.

Sandra says she even carries around a doll now, at 52 years old.

"I did not understand that even at the point of fighting the effort that there was still another part of me that needed a doll," she said.

The drive for 5,000 dolls will last until December. The dolls will then be distributed to women and children in counties all through out the Big Bend region.

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