Her road name is Meow. Along with Superman, Aly-Cat, Wolverine, Mighty Mouse and others, she’s a member of Guardians of the Children (GOC), Ottawa Chapter.
All 10 members of this public benefit organization are interested in motorcycles and giving back to the community. GOC’s stated mission is “to recognize and react to child abuse and educate the public to do the same; to serve as advocates to provide strength and stability to families in crisis; and be an answer to the prayer of an abused child or teen for courage, support and protection.”
Superman is president of the local chapter and GOC’s slogan is on the back of his vest: Don’t Let Your Silence Drown Out Their Cries.
‘This touches a lot of us,” says the man in the motorcycle vest. He’s passionate about mentoring and supporting abused kids. And everyone in the organization is well aware of the need.
“One in five kids is abused in some fashion,” Meow points out. “Twenty per cent of kids are abused. That’s unacceptable.”
Meow identifies herself as a survivor. “I was severely molested when I was younger. I don’t want it to happen to anyone.” She continues: “Most of us have been bullied or abused. Those who haven’t have witnessed it happen and they don’t want it to happen anymore.”
Mighty Mouse is Meow’s sister. Wolverine is her husband. And Guardians of the Children is a good fit for their lifestyle. “I’ve always been interested in motorcycles. Then I met my husband and it was meant to be.” Between them, Meow and Wolverine have five kids, aged 17 to 27. “We were looking for some way to help our community, especially with kids, because most of us are parents.”
When the GOC family supports a child or teen, he or she becomes a Little Guardian, with monthly visits, regular, supportive contact and mentors who care. “The child has our hotline.”
Besides, there’s an instant “cool” factor. “They get to go for a ride. They get a helmet, they get a vest, they get a road name. It’s awesome,” Meow smiles.
First established in Texas in 2006, GOC has been in Ottawa since June of 2016. In the past year, three kids have been “adopted” into the protective, supportive fold. “We will always be there for them,” Superman says. “We’re in it for the long haul,” Meow agrees. “The look on the kids’ faces? It means the world to us.”
For details, see guardiansofthechildrencanada.com.