2012-04-19 / Features

April Is National Child Abuse Prevention Month

SPECIAL TO THE NEWS

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. This month and throughout the year, Fulton County Center for Families encourages all individuals and organizations to play a role in making Fulton County a better place for children and families. By ensuring that parents have the knowledge, skills and resources they need to care for their children, we can help promote children’s social and emotional well-being and prevent child maltreatment within families and communities.

Research shows that when parents possess six protective factors, the risk for neglect and abuse diminish, and optimal outcomes for children, youths and families are promoted. The six protective factors are nurturing and attachment, knowledge of parenting and of child and youth development, parental resilience, social connections, concrete supports for parents and social and emotional developmental well-being.

“April is a time to celebrate the important role that communities play in protecting children,” said Jamie Taylor, family support coordinator. “Everyone’s participation is critical. Focusing on ways to build and promote the protective factors, in every interaction with children and families, is the best thing our community can do to prevent child maltreatment and promote optimal child development.”

In support of these efforts, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Children’s Bureau, Office On Child Abuse and Neglect, its Child Welfare Information Gateway, the FRIENDS National Resource Center for the Study of Social Policy – Strengthening Families have created Preventing Child Maltreatment and Promoting Well- Being: Network for Action 2012 Resource Guide. The guide, designed for service providers who work throughout the community to strengthen families, at http://www.childwelfare.gov/ preventing/ preventionmonth/guide2 012.

Activities in Fulton County are:

Reading the “PA One Book, Stop Snoring Bernard” to children in pre- K and kindergarten in all three school districts. Special guest readers include Commissioner Cutchall, Judge Devin Horne, Judge Wendy Mellott and Judge Tamela Bard.

Children in pre-k and kindergarten, early Head Start, Parents As Teachers, preschool-age childcare, Head Start, TIU, school-age childcare decorated pinwheels to be displayed throughout Fulton County during Week of the Young Child.

Children’s art will be displayed in areas within Fulton County. This project is designed to build public awareness of child abuse and the important role of family support programs in prevention.

Information will be distributed to families through the Safe Kids Program.

For more information about child-abuse prevention programs and activities during the month of April and throughout the year contact Fulton County Center for Families at 717-485- 5038, Ext. 1.

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