April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, and Friday, April 13 is Go Blue Day for Missouri’s Kids. On that day, thousands of Missourians will wear blue, the official color of prevention, to show their support for children. Many other community events and activities are scheduled throughout the month to emphasize the critical importance of preventing child abuse and neglect and keeping children safe.
The St. Louis Family & Community Partnership is hosting its Child Abuse Prevention Month kickoff ceremony on Tuesday, April 10, in St. Louis at the Dennis & Judith Jones Visitor and Education Center in Forest Park. Missouri KidsFirst is hosting its 3rd annual Pinwheels For Prevention Awareness Garden on April 11 at noon where over 1,000 pinwheels will be displayed on the south lawn of the Missouri State Capitol. Boys & Girls Town of Missouri, A Great Circle Agency, is sponsoring the Be A Lifesaver – Prevent Child Abuse Campaign throughout the month of April in Springfield and includes an afternoon with Elizabeth Smart on April 13 who will be speaking at the Juanita K. Hammons Hall For The Performing Arts, Missouri State University Campus. Wear Blue Day at the ‘K’ will be the theme at the Kansas City Royals game the evening of April 14 at Kauffman Stadium. The event is sponsored by the Kansas City Child Abuse Roundtable Coalition. These are just a few of the many other community events and activities scheduled around the state to recognize and bring awareness to child abuse and neglect. Click here for a list of scheduled events for April and throughout the year and download or print the Child Abuse Prevention Month flier (pictured).
Learn how to increase awareness during Child Abuse Prevention Month and throughout the year through the 2012 Prevention Month web section on the Child Welfare Information Gateway website. The website features:
- Preventing Child Maltreatment and Promoting Child Well-Being: Network to Action 2012 Resource Guide
- Tip sheets for parents & caregivers available in English and Spanish
- An activity calendar for April relating to the Six Protective Factors
- An online media toolkit for promoting April and prevention
- Prevention Month widgets to post on your website
According to a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), child maltreatment in the United States in 2008 cost an estimated $124 billion in health care expenses, productivity losses, use of the criminal justice system and more. The average lifetime cost for a nonfatal victim of child maltreatment is about $210,000 in 2010 dollars, while the cost for a fatal case of child abuse is nearly $1.3 million.
Awareness about child abuse and neglect strengthens communities and builds support for children and families in the effort to prevent child abuse. Prevention is the insurance policy for good health, mental health, crime reduction, educational and economic prosperity for our next generation. We hope that you will join the Children’s Trust Fund in investing in Missouri’s children by supporting prevention efforts and organizations in your community in April and throughout the year.