April is Child Abuse Prevention monthBy Francisco Barrios
April will be the Child Abuse Prevention´s month in Douglas thanks to a proclamation signed by Mayor Michael Gomez on Wednesday, March 28.
The proclamation calls upon all citizens, community agencies, religious organizations, medical facilities, and business to increase their participation in our efforts to prevent child abuse, thereby strengthening the communities in which we live.
The proclamation also recognized that child abuse prevention is a community problem and finding solutions depends on involvement among people throughout the community.
The Douglas for Stronger Families Regional Prevention Council, which received the proclamation shares this thought. It is dedicated to find more ways to make Douglas a safer place to live for the childhood.
Jennie Molina, Secretary for the Council said that they have been working to reach this goal for over 15 years. They organize and conduct community activities to offer prevention services through different health and educational agencies.
Molina mentioned that over the years more than over $16 million has been collected and 50 different prevention programs have been funded including teen and adult parenting education, child abuse prevention, support groups for parents, First Steps programs, annual child abuse prevention conference, Regional Child abuse Prevention Councils, and Healthy Families Arizona programs and evaluation. Healthy Families Programs have proven dramatically effective in educating parents and keeping children safe from child abuse and neglect.
For this month, the council will be sponsoring Katie´s Way, which is a presentation on dating violence.
“Last year we presented this at the High School and we had over 1,500 kids that actually got to see and learn about dating violence,” Molina said. “We did a survey afterwards and we found on the results that many of the kids have been physically or mentally abused while dating or they know about somebody that has been abused while dating, and more commonly with text-bullying and cyber-bullying.”
Katie´s way will be presented again at the High School this year but it will be given to Junior High School level schools.
Also, the council will be doing a Parent-Child Movie Day at the Box Cinema on April 21. The requirement to see the movie will be that kids will have to be with their parents at the cinema to see and learn about child abuse prevention. Tickets will be given by members of the council to deserving families.
The council will be doing other activities throughout the year in collaboration with different agencies to share information about how to praise your child, child abuse prevention and creating good relationships between parents and childhood.
The Douglas for Stronger Families Regional Prevention Council always welcomes community members who which to become part of the council. The group meets every second Monday of the month at different locations.
This month, the council will meet on April 9 at 5 p.m. at Corazon Behavioral Center, located at 10th Street, between G and F Avenues.
For additional information contact Angel Acosta at 520-364-4446 ext. 127.