Child Abuse Prevention Month in April

Child Abuse Prevention Month in April

April has been declared National Child Abuse Prevention month. In response, a number of local organizations are taking part by bringing awareness to the issue and educating individuals on how to become involved.

In 2012, the most recent report available, the U.S. Department for Child Welfare confirmed that almost 400,000 children were awaiting homes in foster care. Of those 400,000 over 13,000 children were located in Texas; 4,000 in Dallas county alone. Nearly 40 percent of all children enter foster care due to abuse.

“Almost all of them were hurt by someone that they knew and loved and trusted, and yet that’s exactly the people who hurt them,” Beverly Levy, executive director and president of Dallas Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), a non-profit group dedicated to representing abused and neglected children in court, told Dallas News.

The Dallas region CASA has plans Friday to kick off Child Abuse Prevention month by hosting an event on Friday in remembrance of the 17 children who died as a result of abuse in Dallas County last year. Others will raise awareness by dawning blue ribbons and raising funds to support the cause.

Covenant Kids, a non-profit foster adopt agency working in the Dallas, Arlington, and Plano region will take part with a bike fundraiser intended to raise dollars for foster children who are in need of forever homes. Foster parents play an important role in preventing child abuse.

“The point of foster care is to provide a safe place where children can grow and heal while their biological parents work towards re-establishing a safe home,” Jennifer Kornegay an employee at Covenant Kids explained.

The bike fundraising team, Raising Hopes with Spokes, has committed to a 40-mile bike ride with the goal of raising at least $6,000 or enough money to place three foster children in forever homes.

“It just seems like there is so much more that we can do,” said the fundraiser’s founder, Joanna Birchfield. “This ride is the first thing that I could think of. My awareness has been raised about this universal problem that isn’t going to get fixed in a day but hopefully this little drop in the bucket of a bike ride is a start.”

More information about events in preparation for Child Abuse Prevention month can be found at the Child Welfare Information Gateway. The 19th National Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect will take place from April 30th to May 2nd in New Orleans. The conference will include discussions about policy, research, and practice.


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Dallas News CASA Event

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