— Rollie Hawk photo
The month of April is a special time of year for Human Service providers as it is set aside as a month to raise awareness of child abuse and neglect. Child Abuse Prevention Month was first officially recognized by a presidential proclamation in 1983 and it has continued in April every year since.
Family Counseling Center, Inc. participates in a number of Child Abuse Prevention Month activities in the region and has been involved in the planning in all of the counties it serves. By wearing a blue ribbon throughout the month and by taking part in activities or by “going blue” in some other way, we are raising awareness of child abuse and neglect while demonstrating that we all have a role to play in prevention.
Locally, Family Counseling Center, Inc. participated with Hardin County Jr. High School students on Thursday, April 18 in Oxford Gymnasium (due to rain). Students learned about types of child abuse, how to recognize it, who to speak to about it, and how to report it. Hardin County State’s Attorney Dan Cockrum, Hardin County Sheriff’s Department School Resource Officer Jason Rister, Family Counseling Center Executive Director Sherrie Crabb and Marsha Hayes with FCC’s Family Resource Development were among those who spoke to Hardin County students.
Due to rain, students, most wearing blue in support, marched around the gym waving blue pinwheels, to take a stand against child abuse.
Family Counseling Center, Inc. believes that every child has the right to a great childhood that is free of abuse and neglect and that supporting that right is one of the most powerful ways to help others to reach their full potential. The public is reminded that any instances of child abuse or neglect should be reported by calling 1-800-25-ABUSE.
Two of the hashtags Prevent Child Abuse Illinois encourages us to use are #GreatChildhoods and #GoBlueIllinois so be on the lookout for those on social media.