The abduction of Elizabeth Smart was one of the most followed child abduction cases of our time. Elizabeth was abducted on June 5, 2002 and her captors had controlled her by threatening to kill her and her family if she tried to escape. Fortunately, the police safely returned Elizabeth back to her family on March 12, 2003 after being held prisoner for 9 months. Through this traumatic experience Elizabeth has become an advocate for change related to child abduction, recovery programs and National legislation. Elizabeth triumphantly testified before her captor and the world about the very private nightmare she suffered during her abduction, which lead to conviction. Elizabeth is currently involved in the "Elizabeth Smart Foundation", and she has helped promote The National AMBER Alert, The Adam Walsh Child Protection & Safety Act and other safety legislation to help prevent abductions. Elizabeth is also a News Correspondent for ABC News.
Elizabeth's abduction and recovery has motivated and continues to motivate parents, law enforcement and leaders worldwide to focus on children's safety. Emphasizing the vigilance of everyday people in finding missing children and the belief that there is always hope and we can never stop searching for each and every missing child. Two years ago, Elizabeth worked with the Department of Justice and four other recovered young adults in creating a survivors guide, entitled – "You're Not Alone: The Journey From Abduction to Empowerment." This guide is meant to encourage children who have gone through similar experiences to not give up and know that there is life after tragic events.
Elizabeth's example and life now is a daily demonstration that there really is life after a tragic event. Her speech not only tells her story, but also discusses topics such as overcoming extreme adversity and not allowing your past to dictate your life's future.
Elizabeth is studying music at Brigham Young University with an emphasis on harp performance
Unleash the Brilliance
UNLEASH THE BRILLIANCE (UTB) helps change the life trajectory of at-risk youth and young adults.
UTB uses dance, music, theater and positive, personal testimony to inspire, motivate and reshape attitudes and behaviors.
The UTB presentations penetrate the minds of the at-risk youth to seed positive interaction and an opportunity to harvest later in life. UTB bond teen mentorship with students at risk - As they share a frequency and wavelength that is optimal and which makes the message more appealing and soothing.
UTB has three tenets:
- Perform, Perform, Perform - To keep yourself in play with education so that you do not fumble the ball of life.
- Compromise, Compromise, Compromise - To maintain family harmony and not burn bridges with other family members. To transform the face of frustration to the face of calm for parents and/or guardians.
- Restraint, Restraint, Restraint - Do not allow yourself or others to drive criminal behaviors that lead to detention or incarceration.
If we can help build young people's self-esteem and self-reliance they will be more open to compromise and more willing to stay in school and pursue further education.
When you Unleash the Brilliance you don't hip hop around education...You will hip hop through until every facet of you glimmers and shines.