Child Abuse Prevention Month recognizes every community’s role in growing a better tomorrow for all children, together.
 
CRESTON, IA, March 29, 2022--Southwestern Community College's Parents as Teachers, Union County Family Support Council and Prevent Child Abuse Iowa recognizes the importance of community-based support for all children and families during National Child Abuse Prevention (CAP) Month in April. The theme of this year’s awareness and impact campaign is “Growing a Better Tomorrow for All Children, Together.”
 
April 2022 marks the third year CAP Month occurs during the COVID-19 pandemic. The risk to our nation’s children for experiencing child abuse and neglect in times of extreme stress and uncertainty remains high. COVID-19 adds stress that can overload parents and caregivers, such as loss of employment, loss of income due to lack of paid leave, the necessity of new child care and schooling arrangements, and food insecurity.
 
“Now more than ever, we need to band together in collective ways that help our families and children thrive. Too often, our society thinks of raising healthy children as a parent or caregiver’s responsibility alone,” said Kristie Nixon SWCC ECE/PAT Director. “In reality, we all benefit when groups of people work together to collectively care for children.”
 
Children and families are our greatest natural resource. We all have a stake in preparing children to grow up to be healthy and thriving members of our community. Protective factors are the strengths and resources families draw on during difficult times to shield them from life's stresses. Research shows that when parents possess protective factors, the risk for neglect and abuse diminish and optimal outcomes for children, youth, and families are promoted. Major protective factors include knowledge of parenting, knowledge of child development, parental resilience, social connections, and concrete supports.
 
Throughout CAP Month, Prevent Child Abuse Iowa, its parent organization, Prevent Child Abuse America, alongside other chapters, affiliates, and supporting organizations like SWCC Parents as Teachers are using the community garden metaphor to reinforce the message that “Every day, we help families and children thrive.”  
 
“Research shows that positive childhood experiences grow thriving families and communities,” explained Dr. Melissa Merrick, president and CEO of Prevent Child Abuse America. “This is the moment to build a child and family well-being system that propels families to grow and thrive together. Please consider joining us to ensure safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments are cultivated to enable children, families, and entire communities to succeed – today and for generations to come.”
 
Prevent Child Abuse Iowa recommends the following ways that people everywhere can dig in and help raise awareness and impact virtually during this year’s CAP Month:
  • Wear blue on April 1, Wear Blue Day, to show support for children and families. Post a photo or video on social media and include the #WearBlueDay2022 hashtag.
  • Show your support on April 4 at 10:30 a.m. as the Union County Board of Supervisors signs an official proclamation proclaiming April 2022 as Child Abuse Prevention Month.
  • Participate in Prevent Child Abuse America’s nationwide Digital Advocacy Day, on April 27: https://preventchildabuse.org/2022-digital-advocacy-day/ 
  • Contact legislators to let them know that you and your community support family-friendly policies, such as paid sick and family leave, that help reduce stress on parents and caregivers.
  • Follow Prevent Child Abuse Iowa on social media and share our posts throughout April https://www.facebook.com/pcaiowa/   
  • Encourage friends and family to do the same. Use the hashtags #GrowingBetterTogether and #CAPMonth to signify your commitment to helping children, families, and entire communities to thrive.
  • Attend a Nurturing Healthy Sexual Development training or Overcoming Barriers to Protecting Children from Sexual Abuse,  https://bit.ly/CIACWorkshopRegistration  
For more ways to get involved in CAP Month, please visit https://preventchildabuse.org/   
 
About Prevent Child Abuse America
 
A leading champion for all children in the United States, Prevent Child Abuse America is the nation’s oldest and largest organization dedicated to the primary prevention of child abuse and neglect. Through its nationwide network of state chapters and nearly 600 Healthy Families America home visiting programs, the organization provides services and resources that improve child health and well-being. Prevent Child Abuse America experts develop innovative, evidence-based prevention strategies, raise public awareness, and advocate for family-friendly policies and programs at the national, state, and local levels to ensure that all children and families get what they need to thrive. Prevent Child Abuse America is a top charity for children, rated by Consumer Reports and charity oversight organizations, including Charity Navigator, GreatNonprofits, and GuideStar. Visit preventchildabuse.org to learn more.
 
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