By Lavern Nissley
Have you ever seen the TV commercials with pets that are skinny, shaking and looking forsaken? My heart always goes out to these neglected creatures with the wish that such lack of care and concern could be totally eradicated.
The blue pinwheels you are seeing all over the nation this week are a reminder to pay attention to incidents of abuse. But not of pets. Of children.
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and Wednesday is National Wear Blue Day in honor of children who are victims of abuse and neglect.
On March 12, 2019 we posted a blog here entitled What's Your ACE Score? This is one of the big WHY's behind National Child Abuse Prevention Month. In a nutshell, a person's ACE score (Adverse Childhood Experiences) has been correlated with a host of physical and psychological maladies. Childhood trauma often has lasting effects, and hurt people hurt people. And the cycle continues unless advocates courageously stand up for children.
Locally, in Clark County, Ohio last year 3,918 adults submitted reports of suspected or alleged child abuse, according to Denise Estep, Deputy Director of Family and Children Services at Clark County Job and Family Services. Unfortunately, drug and substance abuse is often at the core of behaviors that find children mired in neglect and cruelty. A front page Springfield News-Sun article on April 7 highlights the strong connection between drugs and abuse of children.
Fortunately, our friends at Clark County Job and Family Services work hard at keeping kids safe, even if it is relocating them to more stable family members. We are so grateful for their advocacy as well as many other agencies and individuals who invest into the lives of traumatized children.
Reflections: How can I be an advocate on behalf of abused or neglected children? What can I do to ensure my own children are totally loved and cared for?
Children: They're. Our. Future.
Lavern & Ronda Nissley are co-directors of Encompass. Married since 1978, both enjoy coffee, riding their tandem bicycle and working together to build strong relationships.