About AAWA

ADVOCATES for AWARENESS of WATCHTOWER ABUSES (AAWA) is an international not-for-profit educational organization, with 501 (c) (3) tax exempt status, dedicated to raising awareness about policies of the Watch Tower Society that violate basic human rights. AAWA is also committed to offering help and support to those who are mentally and emotionally afflicted by the Society’s teachings and practices.

AAWA was incorporated in March 2013.

AAWA is a religiously-neutral organization. In other words, we do not promote or endorse any religious or philosophical belief systems.

AAWA’s goal is to shine a bright light on harmful Watchtower policies, identify the methods of undue influence Watchtower uses to break down the resistance and resolve of anyone who tries to leave, and provide assistance and education for thinking Jehovah’s Witnesses who want to break free from Watchtower’s clutches.

AAWA is an educational resource for the large non-Jehovah’s Witness world community, which includes the media, educators, researchers, medical and legal experts, and of course interested Witnesses and ex-Witnesses.

How Is AAWA Organized?

AAWA is managed by a board of three corporate directors. They are:

Lee MarshLee Marsh – President – Lee is a long-standing member of the Ex-JW community, and has done considerable work in the field of help and support for those struggling with emotional difficulties through their association with Watchtower. Lee also coordinates our Support Services. leemarsh@aawa.co
Marc Latham -125Marc Latham – Vice President – Residing in the Midlands of the UK, Marc and his wife Cora are widely known for taking an informed stand against abusive Watchtower policies through their YouTube Channel. Their opposition now involves dialogue with British government authorities to effectively expose violations of the UK’s Child Safeguarding Policy. Also on their radar will be domestic violence and the use of shunning by Jehovah’s Witnesses. marclatham@aawa.co
Richard E. KellyRichard E. Kelly – Secretary Treasurer – Richard is the author of Growing Up In Mama’s Club, and The Ghosts From Mama’s Club. He worked for two years at Brooklyn Headquarters before realizing that the organization and its beliefs were deeply flawed. A retired businessman now living in southern Arizona, Richard is now heavily involved in the Ex-JW community. richardekelly@aawa.co

The directors utilize the advice of hundreds of volunteers, supporters and advisers to set AAWA’s strategies. Six of those advisers are:

John HoyleJohn Hoyle – John is a long-time activist and the founder of several Ex-JW websites including WatchtowerWatch.com and Ex-JW.com. From his home in central Oregon he lends his technical skills to a number of other websites. He helps grease the wheels of the Ex-JW Internet community by doing his best to ensure that the latest news and information about the Watchtower Society is available. johnahoyle@aawa.co

Paul-Grundy-125Paul Grundy – Based in Australia, Paul is the founder of JWfacts.com – arguably the finest and most comprehensive source of analysis of JW teachings on the internet. His website has helped many to discover “the truth about the truth” through his informative articles and calm, reasoned approach. paulgrundy@aawa.co
gregorio-smithGregorio Smith – Gregorio is a filmmaker from Brooklyn, NY. The director/producer of TRUTH BE TOLD, a feature documentary about growing up in the Jehovah’s Witness religion. Founding partner of SMITHKRAFT PRODUCTIONS, LLC, an independent multimedia production company, specializing in commercial digital media, independent films, and original web-based content. A graduate of Baruch College and a member of the International Documentary Association. He was raised a Jehovah’s Witness. gregorio@aawa.co
Lee ElderLee Elder – “Lee Elder” is a founding member and the Director of Associated Jehovah’s Witnesses for Reform on Blood. He is also editor of the organization’s website (AJWRB.org). He provides direct support to medical professionals, educators, and others involved in counseling and treating Jehovah’s Witnesses and their families when blood transfusions may be appropriate or prescribed therapy. “Lee” retains his status as a Jehovah’s Witness, allowing him to stay informed as to current Watchtower blood policy. His experience and expertise provides AAWA with additional resources and credibility on the subject of Watchtower blood doctrine and policy. LeeElderAJWRB@gmail.com
Mickey HudsonMickey Hudson –  Known by her YouTube alias “Danmera Dinglebum,” Mickey was once closely associated with Jehovah’s Witnesses, although she fled the organization before getting baptized. She has been a champion of truth and reason on her YouTube channel, which she uses to help people see the reality behind Watchtower and its teachings. mickeyhudson@aawa.co
Bo Juel JensonBo Juel Jensen – Bo, one of our founding members, is a prominent Ex-JW activist from Norway, and has appeared on Norwegian television explaining Watchtower’s mishandling of child abuse to the public in his country. A keen entrepreneur, Bo was one of the founders of the charity “Hjelpekilden” (Help Source), which (similar to AAWA) offers support to survivors of abuse by cults in Scandinavia.  bojuel@aawa.co

The above nine individuals vary in age and come from a variety of backgrounds, but they are by no means an elite group of people. They are joined by hundreds of passionate people from five different continents who champion fundamental human rights, which are outlined in The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948). Their efforts make up a worldwide collaborative effort of many passionate volunteers, who for most of them lived their lives ruled by Watchtower’s policies. They KNOW how this high-demand pseudo-religious group affects the everyday lives of men, women and children.

How does AAWA operate? Each year we determine appropriate strategies and enlist the help of our volunteers and supporters to make it happen. If you are interested in helping, please note the following strategies for 2015:

  1. Helping update and organize AAWA websites—aawa.co and ajwrb.org.
  2. Writing articles and press releases.
  3. Meeting and talking with non-JW groups. (Should be able to follow a pre-approved outline, have good communication skills and be well organized.)
  4. Sharing personal stories about Watchtower abuses in 1,500 words or less.
  5. Helping AAWA use the social media to expand its network of interests.
  6. Working on special AAWA research projects and promoting key AAWA initiatives.
  7. Helping Professors and PhD students who are working on university research projects related to Watchtower abuses.
  8. Making financial contributions to AAWA to help pay for legal advice, videos, press conferences, films, think-tank meetings, special workshops and networking.

If you are interested in helping, please visit our volunteer page and download our questionnaire or you can make a financial contribution by using the link on our home page.

For more information on AAWA and its policies and objectives, please read our Mission Statement and FAQs page. For any specific questions or technical issues, please don’t hesitate to contact us by emailing editor@aawa.co or webmaster@aawa.co .

 


Comments

About AAWA — 11 Comments

  1. AAWA is religious neutral. Paul’s use of scripture shows how the Watchtower misunderstands big-time the book it claims reveals the ultimate truth to its brain-dead followers. Helping people to learn to think for themselves, to use critical thinking skills, and decide for themselves what they want to believe without being made to feel guilty is what AAWA is all about.

  2. I agree with Steve. Arguing interpretations of the Bible is not religiously neutral; nor is calling JWs who interpret the scripture differently “brain-dead”. Calling people names is certainly inappropriate.

  3. religous neutrality does not imply not to speak about wrong interpretation of scriptures which can be proved– if the WTS mistranslates a Greek word to serve their own purpose such things should be made clear..

    • The video also does not tell the FULL truth. It ignores the Watchtower’s doctrine regarding living in a paradise earth and all of the illustrations, verbiage, songs, etc. associated to paradise to which children are also exposed (petting animals, gardens, bountiful food, etc). The JW children are not just exposed to a doom message, but to a “paradise fulfilled” message as well. But I guess the FULL truth is not AAWA’s agenda.

      • Why do they cover up sex abuse then…don’t see how that benefits children….ask the elders about their manual and how they threaten parents with disfellowshipment if they report it to the police….dont say it’s only a few that do it cause that’s crap.

  4. So its ok for the Watchtower to allow known sex offenders in2 their cult and not tell other members….As for paradise on earth y wood a loving god wipe out 7 billion + ppl who dont believe in him….also how can u pik an entity that may not exist over ur own children and shun them if they leave this cult….u judge everyone yet if a person is accused of child abuse and the victim doesnt hav another whitness they say “leave it in jehovahs hands” ???? If u like children we will protect u but if u r gay we will condem u sed the Watchtower…well u keep going to the kingdom halls and pretend to b holy….I dont need to believe in something to know Im a good person….I dont believe in fairytales…I cant wait til the Watchtower loses their tax-free status…..if I had 19 million $ I would b taxed so should they

  5. I was a JW since birth (baptized when i was 15, dissociated myself when I was almost 19). I am now 37 year of age and my parents have shunned me and have not spoken to me for many years.

    However, they have a good standing relationship with my stepsister who was turned down for baptism by the elders when she was 14. Since then, she has not re-applied nor has she returned to the organisation. She also ran away from home when she was 16 to seek refuge with her non-jw family in the UK.
    I know for fact through other sources that my parents come regularly in the UK to visit my stepsister but refuse to see me because in their eyes “I am dead”.

    My father is an elder (i learned about this through a local newspaper on the net in France as I now reside in the UK) and NOT ONLY does he comply with the family shunning directive and policy but he is also selfishly motivated to do so given his position as an elder. This is clearly stated in the elders secret book Shepherd the flock.

    My father re-married when I was about 2 and had me in custody as he believed that if I lived with my mother, I would have an unhappy life and she was not worthy as she had left the WBTS one of the reasons why they divorced. My mother’ s mother taught my father in the truth but she also left just after 1975 went by. Both my father and stepmother always discouraged to see her because she was labelled “worldly” and would have been a bad influence to my well-being. in fact, when I was 5, we moved to Mauritius as there was a need for JWs and that is when I lost all touch with my mother. As a result, I grew up as a JW but without a mother for almost 19 years until I left. Why did I leave?

    When I was 17 or 18 I was assigned to the sound for Recording public talk at the Kingdom Hall, I gave talks when I was 8 until I left, pioneered several times, spoke at conventions… I strived to be a good witness and wanted to end up at HQ because preaching was hard. I was even challenged by an elder when I was pioneering about my hours and whether they were made up. That is when my doubts started. Then when I was often sitting at the back of the call to do the sounds, I started to take a step back as to what I was hearing, a smug repetition of words that we’re no longer reaching my heart and my mind. I picked up on many contradictions, paradoxes but I could not put into adequate and objective words. In the end I was no longer listening to what was being said at the KH meetings as I knew deep in my heart that it was not the truth but like brother Ray Franz but “traditions of men”. (Watchtower did not reach my heart as it was common to say with the JW). Had I read the writings of Ray Franz, Peter Gregerson, Don Cameron or Barbara Henderson I WOULD NEVER HAD GOT BAPTISED. Obsiously I couldn’t as their writtings were released after i had left the organisation in 1996.

    In the meantime, I have lost my childhood, I did not have the chance to get to know my mother during all my youth since I was 2, I have and am still going through therapy to re-construct myself hoping one day, my parents will wake up to this JW scam or at the least try to be more human towards me.
    Please view my latest conversation with one of the elder from bethel UK regarding shunning and hois reaction when quized about the Finished Mystery and false prophecies.

  6. I would just like to let you know that there is a strong Jehovah Witness presence on Yahoo Answers. It’s a question and answer site. They are in the religion and spirituality section trying to recruit people. There’s a small group of people who try to warn others about them, but more help is needed. Thank you.

  7. I wonder If some kind of shelter could be organized for EX and present JW families to lay their heads with job fair resources and fresh start. What do you think?

  8. In my opinion AAWA is religiously neutral, but the Watchtower is not. So the AAWA’s reference to scripture attempts to show the inconsistency of the Watchtower, not to promote even the Bible, let alone any Christian denomination or Bible based religion. However, I may be with you, the argument should focus in a universally undeerstood sense of justice and compassion, and not on whatever the Bible says.

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