DENVER — A 2005 study showed more than 30,000 cases of child abuse were reported in Colorado – in that year alone. Eight years later, thousands are coming together in an effort to change those statistics.
The “Be the One, Colorado” campaign against child abuse begins Monday. You’ll see supporters wearing blue today across the state, and especially on the west steps of the State Capitol.
Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, Senator Linda Newell of Littleton, Representative Cheri Gerou of Evergreen and Colorado Department of Human Services Executive Director Reggie Bicha will lead the rally at the capitol.
There will also be special guest speakers, including Denver Bronco Wesley Woodyard, who will help supporters plant a pinwheel garden at the capitol to raise awareness about the campaign..
More than 40 organizations are coming together to help with the campaign, which is seeking to help parents with anger management, teach the community about signs of child abuse and strengthen support programs for children at risk.
Below are five ways you can work to help prevent child abuse and neglect:
1. Resilient Parents
Challenging times impact every family. Recognizing stressful situations, learning new coping skills, and keeping a sense of hope helps us take constructive action to turn things around.
2. Parents with Knowledge of Early Childhood Development
Taking time to learn about child development teaches us how to set realistic expectations and gives parents tools to cope with various situations. Take a parenting class, check out a parenting book from the library, or visit a parenting website or blog.
3. Positive Emotional and Social Development in Children
Ensuring that children fully develop by teaching them the skills to identify their feelings, communicate their needs, solve their problems, and have positive social interaction with their peers.
4. Parents with Strong Networks of Family & Friends
Having a support system helps us get needed breaks, share ideas on what works, cope with difficult times, and prevents isolation. Join a play group or family fitness class in your neighborhood.
5. Parents with Access to Professional Support
Knowing where to turn when problems are too big to deal with alone. Call 1-800-CHILDREN for support.
For more information, visit www.StrengtheningFamilies.net