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WHAT is "grooming"?

Updated: Dec 15, 2022

How is it that children and adults end up being defiled, exploited, and trafficked?

Couldn’t they have stopped it from happening?

Couldn’t they just have said “no!”?

A case was recently in the Fiji news about a husband and wife who were handed

imprisonment sentences for the rape and defilement of their house girl’s two daughters, age 12 and 15.

Surely those girls were old enough to know better?


“Grooming” is when someone builds a relationship, trust, and emotional connection with an individual so they can manipulate, exploit, and abuse them. Anybody can be a groomer, no matter their age, gender, race, position in the family, or position in the community.

Grooming is manipulative and effective.

People who groom are exceptionally patient, building relationships with the intended victim over weeks and months, and sometimes years.

Some examples of grooming:

Giving gifts or special attention

Making the person feel special or indebted

Making close physical contact, i.e. tickling, wrestling; which progresses over time

Exposing the victim to nudity and sexual material – either “accidentally” or on purpose

Controlling a person through threats, force, or misuse of authority – with the intent of creating fear

On-line contact, building a relationship with the person, interacting in inappropriate ways – telling the individual to keep it a secret

Talk to your children.

  • Talk about how God created sex to be within the safety of marriage. Talk about their feelings about sex, the opposite sex, how their body is changing.

  • Talk about on-line safety.

  • Install parental controls on all family devices: laptops; desktop computers; phones.

  • Know where your children are, who their friends are.

  • Look for signs of change: withdrawal; extra cash or gifts on hand; sexual actions inappropriate for their age; secrecy; night mares.

Let your children know that you are a safe place in which they can confide.

Report your concerns:

OR call them on: (+679) 331 5599 Extension: 325 333.

You can also make a complaint by calling the Fiji Police Force Emergency line on: (+679) 917 or 919.

Further Information:


Please visit our website, Homes of Hope Fiji, to join our team through prayer, giving, educating others, visiting, or volunteering.


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