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Preventing Child Abuse

Rappahannock Area Council on Children and Parents planted a pinwheel garden last weekend. The garden is part of Child Abuse Awareness Month, which is April.

The annual garden, in front of the Rappahannock United Way, represents victims of child abuse.

The group Prevent Child Abuse offers these tips:

  • Be a nurturing parent.

Children need to know that they are special, loved and capable of following their dreams.

  • Help a friend, neighbor or relative.

Being a parent isn’t easy. Offer a helping hand take care of the children, so the

parent(s) can rest or spend time together.

  • Help yourself.

When the big and little problems of your everyday life pile up to the point you feel

overwhelmed and out of control – take time out. Don’t take it out on your kid.

  • If your baby cries…

It can be frustrating to hear your baby cry. Learn what to do if your baby won’t stop

crying. Never shake a baby – shaking a child may result in severe injury or death.

  • Get involved.

Ask your community leaders, clergy, library and schools to develop services to meet the

needs of healthy children and families.

  • Help to develop parenting resources at your local library.
  • Promote programs in school.

Teaching children, parents and teachers prevention strategies can help to keep children


  • Monitor your child’s television and video viewing.

Watching violent films and TV programs can harm young children.

  • Volunteer at a local child abuse prevention program.

For information about volunteer opportunities, call 1.800.CHILDREN.

  • Report suspected abuse or neglect.

If you have reason to believe a child has been or may be harmed, call your local department of children and family services or you local police department.