Every April, National Child Abuse Prevention Month emphasizes the importance of individuals, families, and communities working together to recognize, prevent, and educate others on child abuse in the United States. The United States government, as well as many child welfare agencies, social service programs, schools, and other organizations work to increase access to resources and provide strategies to build awareness, engage in activism, and participate in stabilizing families and youth. At SOS Children’s Villages Illinois, we are participating in Child Abuse Prevention Month with the help of our friends and supporters.
Brief History of the Origin of Child Abuse Prevention Month in the United States
Nearly ten years after the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act was signed into law by President Nixon, President Reagan proclaimed April to be the first National Child Abuse Prevention Month in 1983. That inaugural year, the Bureau’s National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect coordinated widespread activities, promotional materials, and resources to distribute across the United States. including creation and dissemination of information and promotional materials. By 1984, buttons, stickers, and posters displayed what became the theme of child abuse prevention, “Kids—You can’t beat ’em.” In addition, mass media (including television advertisements and PSAs), urged viewers to “Take time out. Don’t take it out on your kid.”
In the 35 years since the inception of Child Abuse Prevention Month, child abuse prevention initiatives and programs have reached numerous milestones – such as the first Blue Ribbon Campaign in 1989, the Year of the Healthy Child in 2005, and the signing of the Family First Prevention Services Act in 2018. At SOS Illinois, we have been at the forefront of providing services centered on building healthy futures for children in foster care and at-risk youth for more than 25 years, and are honored to have participated in over two dozen awareness months for child abuse prevention.
Child Abuse Statistics You Should Know During Child Abuse Prevention Month
Reading the statistics of child abuse in the United States can be jarring and upsetting. However, we recognize that part of preventing child abuse means acknowledging this common problem and understanding the facts. During Child Abuse Prevention Month, we ask you to spend some time learning about the trends of child abuse in the United States.
The following videos reveal the landscape of child abuse, neglect, and associated topics in the United States. At SOS Illinois, we are working to change these statistics and transform the narrative of child welfare in the United States by providing more oversight and support in our Village settings. We invite you to watch these videos for your own knowledge, and share them on your social media timelines to help educate others. Additionally, there are many other helpful online resources for recognizing and preventing child abuse as well as how to care for a child that has been abused.
Check this our to learn more about how you can help prevent child abuse:
- What Are Child Abuse and Neglect?
- End It Now: Understanding and Preventing Child Abuse
- 7 Facts About Child Abuse and Prevention
Recognizing the Signs and Symptoms of Child Abuse in Babies, Youth, and Teens
Recognizing the signs and symptoms in child abuse is crucial in helping to report current abuse and prevent further abuse from occurring. That’s why we has an entire blog about recognizing abuse and creating abuse reports to the appropriate child welfare service agencies. Check out that blog here and learn how these tools can help save lives.
SOS Children’s Villages Aims to Prevent Child Abuse in Illinois and Beyond
At SOS Children’s Villages Illinois, we dedicate each day of the year to preventing child abuse and providing healing experiences for youth in foster care and at-risk children and teens. Whether through the workings inside of our Villages or through the in-home family services provided by Casa Tepeyac, we aim to stabilize families and mitigate the risk of neglect, physical, and emotional harm for youth in Illinois. Together with our partners and supporters, we feel empowered to amplify our voices this month to raise awareness of child abuse prevention. We cannot do it without your help. We are asking you to consider making an online gift in honor of our efforts to keep children safe throughout Illinois. By making your gift online today, you can ensure we can put your donation into immediate action, helping to provide healing and hope to children in need. Not able to give at this time? Join us as an Influencer during April and May to help spread awareness of this important cause and learn ways that you can get your family, friends, and workplace involved!