Monday, March 23, 2009

Mission 4 Monday- Prevent Child Abuse


Child abuse leaves more than just bruises. Long after children have recovered from the physical results of a beating, abused children suffer from emotional and psychological trauma that can last the rest of their lives.
Adults who experienced
child abuse in their youth are more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol, commit violent crimes, form unhealthy relationships, and even abuse their own children.
Unfortunately, many bystanders witness child abuse and do nothing about it. Neighbors and friends, may hear or even see child abuse happening, but don't want to intrude or interfere with "the rights" of the parents. Such inaction can mean years of pain and heartbreak for young children who are unable to get out of a bad situation.
Abused children need your intervention. In their helplessness, they must rely on capable adults who are willing to take a stand and get them out of an abusive environment. By being aware of child abuse, and helping to educate the people you know, you can help prevent child abuse in your community.

Learn about child abuse. Educate yourself by taking the
Myths and Realities About Child Abuse Quiz. Keep these key facts in mind:
Child abusers can be any age, any gender, and any race. They can be from any economic class and have any level of education.
Children are more likely to be abused by their own parents than by a stranger.
Rarely does an incident of child abuse happen in isolation. When a child is abused once, it is likely to happen again.
Educate your neighbors and friends about child abuse. Consider emailing your acquaintances a link to this article. Or, ask an official from a local domestic violence shelter to speak to your neighborhood group, church association, PTA, or other organization. They are usually more than willing to share what they know about how to prevent child abuse.
Make sure your acquaintances know that they can get help if they find themselves in a situation where they could become an abuser. It is often difficult for abusers to get help because they are afraid of losing their children and don't want to be judged by the people they know. Abusers can get the help they need by:
Making an anonymous call to the
National Child Abuse Hotline (1-800-4-A-Child). Non-judgmental hotline counselors will help them work through their problems, suggest alternative ways to interact with their children, and connect them with resources that are available in their community.
Joining a support group.
Parents Anonymous holds weekly meetings around the country to help people develop positive parenting skills. The group meetings are free of charge and parents are welcome to attend for as long as they wish.
Seeking respite care. Many states offer
respite care programs that will take care of a children for a few hours if they could be in danger of abuse. Such programs are not meant to be daycares, but they do offer an emergency solution for parents who need some immediate relief and don't have friends or family members they can turn to.
Stop child abuse when you see it. If you have trouble identifying the difference between child abuse and acceptable forms of discipline, take a look at the government's
definition of child abuse. If you're concerned that a child may be abused, it's better to be safe than sorry. Here's what you can do:
Call the
National Child Abuse Hotline (1-800-4-A-Child). During your anonymous call, their counselors can help you evaluate the situation and help you make a child abuse report to the proper authorities. If you are nervous about making a report, they will even stay on the line during a 3-way call to offer you support.
Call your state's
Department of Child Protective Services directly. They will take the information you provide and do a thorough investigation into the situation. If they find that child abuse is occurring, they will remove the child from the situation.
If a child is in life-threatening danger, call 911 immediately.
It's time that people take a stand against child abuse. Your simple actions will help prevent child abuse and give abused children hope for a brighter future.


Alicia said...

Hi Denise! Great post. We should all be educated in this area! So many children are abused each day, and probably right under our noses. I think it's always the people you least expect too.

luvmy4sons said...

As always another great idea and great info to have!

Anonymous said...

A topic that is near and dear to my heart! Thanks for sharing it.

Beth in NC said...

Thank you for sharing this Denise.

I know this isn't "abuse" per se, but neglect perhaps. I was leaving the photographer the other day and noticed a child in the front seat of a van. She was about the age of my daughter. I looked for her Mom and didn't see her. There was an even younger child in the back seat. I was alarmed. IF the Mom had been watching the van, she would have seen me looking into it.

I ran back into the portrait place and alerted the employees to please watch the van. The women were alarmed and stood guard while I left.

The toddler could have easily unlocked the van and disappeared. People just don't think. The world isn't like it was when I was a child.

I found out that the Mom came back about 10 minutes after I left. She had been in the store next door. Sigh. Thankfully she had kids when she came back.

Samantha said...

This is such a good post, so much needed information. I worked with abused children in the past and it is very heartbreaking. We must Pray without ceasing, pray, pray
and pray. God is good.
Blessings to you, thank you for sharing !

Genejosh said...

great info...abused children need our prayers...

Mary said...


I have long been a champion of children. If I suspect a child is being abused, I report it immediately. It is my duty as a Christian and a Canadian citizen to do so.

Thanks for bringing public awareness to child abuse.


Lisa said...

My mom bought life insurance policies for my 4 kids and I, Tito has his through. My brother in law had my sign the papers, he is our agent, and told me that parents cannot have more life insurance than their kids because parents have killed their children for the money. I can't even imagine. I'd rather have my kids than money, even if I could not afford it...I would find a way.