April is National Child Abuse and Prevention Month. Randolph County's Partners in Prevention (PIP) team will be raising awareness throughout the month and encouraging our community to support healthy, happy children and families.
The PIP team is made up of the Randolph County Family Resource Network, Youth Health Service Inc., Appalachian Community Health Center, Randolph/Tucker Child Advocacy Center, Home Ties Strengthening Families Center, West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, Women's Aid in Crisis, Randolph County Schools and America's Promise Coalition. The goals of PIP are to raise awareness about the prevention of child abuse and neglect, develop and expand effective services that prevent or reduce child maltreatment, and inform policy makers about best prevention practices for child abuse and neglect.
Blue ribbons and pinwheels symbolize child abuse prevention nationwide. Prevent Child Abuse America has been promoting its "Pinwheels for Prevention" campaign since 2008. More than 900,000 pinwheels have been displayed throughout the duration of the campaign. To stand up for children and let the community know you do not tolerate child abuse, display a pinwheel outside of your home or residence. For more information on pinwheels, call Rebecca Vance, Director of Randolph County FRN, at 304-636-4454.
If you suspect child abuse or neglect, you should report your concerns to the Child Protective Services (CPS) in the Randolph County DHHR office. Reports also can be made to the Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline at 800-352-6513, seven days a week, 24 hours a day. Don't let safety concerns stop you from protecting an innocent child. West Virginia law provides immunity from civil or criminal liability for people reporting in good faith (WV Code 49-6A-6).
Without detection, reporting and intervention, abused and neglected children may remain victims for the rest of their lives or be seriously harmed and/or killed. These children do not grow up and forget their childhood. They carry physical and emotional scars throughout their entire lives, often repeating the pattern of abuse and neglect with their own children. Help us be a voice for children to end this vicious cycle by joining us at one of our family activities in April, volunteering at a child's center or activity, and continuously raising awareness for child abuse and neglect. It's your turn to make a difference.
For more information on how you can become involved or information regarding a specific event, call Ila Kerns at 304- 636-9540 or Vance at 304-636-4454.
Please watch for additional information in The Inter-Mountain and school handouts regarding Child Abuse Prevention Month and the following upcoming events:
April 7: Easter Egg Hunt at Glendale Park, 9 - 11a.m.
April 14: Spring Thaw Family Fun Event at Davis Memorial Presbyterian Church in Elkins, 1-3 p.m.
April 20: Champion for Children Dinner Event at St. Brendan Catholic Church, 6:30 p.m.
April 21: St Jude Dinner , location to be announced, 6 p.m.
April 22-28: NAEYC Week of the Young Child-Events all week long at Home Ties Child Care Center
April 28: "Importance of Play" play date at Home Ties Child Care (YHS), 1-3 p.m.