Child Abuse Prevention Month going virtual in wake of COVID-19

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LACASA Center’s CAP (Child Abuse Prevention) Council will be recognizing national CAP Month virtually this year. Traditional planting of blue and silver pinwheel gardens throughout the Livingston County community has been cancelled due to restrictions in place caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The CAP Council wants to ensure that community members still learn ways to keep kids safe, no matter the unprecedented circumstances surrounding us.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every area of life in Michigan and in Livingston County, including LACASA’s CAP Council’s annual Child Abuse Prevention Month campaign,” said CAP Council coordinator Holly Naylor. “While we will not be planting blue and silver pinwheel gardens throughout the county this year, we recognize that our prevention message is too important to be put on hold for any reason. So, throughout CAP Month in April we will be sharing information about what true prevention looks like- supporting families in our community. We know that we can work together even while staying apart.”

LACASA will be featuring CAP Month-related content online and through social media, including information about the Protective Factors, a research-based initiative that recognizes that risk factors do not define a family’s positive or negative outcomes- how well they deal with the challenges of life is what matters. There will also be information on local resources, ideas for how people can support families during social isolation, and pictures of past pinwheel gardens to remind us that every child deserves a safe and secure childhood.

The CAP Council also encourages everyone in Livingston County to participate in ‘Wear Blue Day’ on Friday, April 3, 2020, and to show off your blue outfits by posting a photo to LACASA’s Facebook page and use #WearBlueDay.

The CAP Council’s annual “Plant a Pinwheel Celebration” event, originally scheduled for Wednesday, April 8, 2020, at the Howell Carnegie Library, has been canceled, and the Champion for Children award has been postponed. The state-wide Child Abuse Prevention Awareness Day event scheduled for April 21, 2020, in Lansing has also been canceled. Visit Michigan’s Children’s Trust Fund (CTF) online to find out more information about how CTF is continuing to support families at this time.

“The CAP Council is always willing to bring information about abuse and neglect prevention to any group or in any format,” said Naylor. “Not just in April, but throughout the year. Prevention is a year-round effort. Please reach out and let us know how we can partner with you and your organization or business to help educate or support your own prevention efforts, whether that is online now or in person later.”

For questions about the modified CAP Month plans in April, to inquire about bringing child abuse prevention information to your business or group, or for any other questions please contact the CAP Council at capcouncil@lacasacenter.org or call (517) 548-1350.

 

LACASA’s CAP Council encourages local residents to get involved in efforts to ensure the safety and well-being of Livingston County Children. The following tips from PCA’s “Pinwheels for Prevention” campaign are easy for everyone to implement:

  • Be a friend to a parent you know. Ask how their children are doing. Draw on your own experiences to provide reassurance and support. If a parent seems to be struggling, offer to babysit or run errands, or just lend a friendly ear. Show you understand.

  • Be a friend to a child you know. Remember their names. Smile when you talk with them. Ask them about their day at school. Send them a card in the mail. Show you care.

  • Talk to your neighbors about looking out for one another’s children. Encourage a supportive spirit among parents in your apartment building or on your block. Show that you are involved.

  • Give your used clothing, furniture and toys for use by another family. This can help relieve the stress of financial burdens that parents sometimes take out on their kids.

  • Volunteer your time and money for programs in your community that support children and families.

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The Livingston Post is the only locally owned, all-digital information and opinion site in Livingston County, Mich. It was launched by award-winning journalists who were laid off from the Livingston County Daily Press & Argus by Gannett Co. Inc. in 2009.

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