Foundation Set up to Help Victims of Clergy Sexual Abuse

Associated Press, carried in Telegram & Gazette [Lowell MA]
Downloaded April 6, 2004

LOWELL, Mass.- A man who was sexually abused by a priest as a child has started a nonprofit organization to establish support groups for other victims and their families.

Gary Bergeron, of Lowell, became one of the most vocal spokesmen for victims two years ago, when he went public with his own abuse by the late Rev. Joseph Birmingham.

He recently formed The T.R.U.S.T. Foundation Inc.: Treatment, Recovery & Understanding Sexual Trauma.

He said the foundation will seek to establish weekly, biweekly and eventually daily support groups run by trained clinical professionals.

"Finding out that there were few, if any, places to turn for help after coming forward was overwhelming," Bergeron said.

Bergeron said the foundation will also promote research into the area of childhood sexual abuse, particularly by priests.


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