Day of Prayer
April is Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Month. Tippecanoe County CASA asks the faith community to offer prayer in April to demonstrate their appreciation to those who help abused or neglected children and to support children and families who have been impacted by abuse. Below are some resources you may consider using in your Blue Day of Prayer. Let us know if you plan to participate and we can provide ribbons, blue pinwheels, or speak at your worship service or small groups.
Child Abuse and Neglect Statistics
Ways to get involved
Consider a proactive self-assessment on your organization’s policy on protecting children. Does your organization require DCS history checks? This information does not show up on a criminal background check.
Train your staff and members on the signs of abuse or neglect and how to report any suspicion of abuse or neglect to the DCS Hotline (1-800-800-5556).
Train your staff and members in the signs on child sexual abuse through the Stewards of Children program.
Consider becoming a foster parent.
Volunteer with Tippecanoe County Child Abuse Prevention Council.
Advocate for abused or neglected kids as a CASA volunteer. Apply at tippecanoe.in.gov/CASA.
Reach out to families with children in your community to see how you can help support them. Even simple things, like watching their kids for 15 minutes or dropping off a meal or groceries, can help reduce stress.
Enjoy the outdoors with your children. Take advantage of parks and trails near you, including Celery Bog Natural Area Columbian Park and Zoo, and Happy Hollow Park.
Check in with neighbors, friends, or family, especially those with children. Consider starting a neighborhood chat if one does not exist for your area. Strong networks can help parents when they feel overwhelmed.
If you suspect child abuse or neglect, call 1-800-800-5556. The Indiana Department of Child Service’s Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline is available 24/7 and is anonymous. Remind your congregants that all Indiana adults are mandatory reporters by law.
Understand how other issues, such as domestic violence and drug dependency, impact child abuse and neglect. Evaluate your organization’s practices surrounding such issues.
History of the Blue Ribbon
In 1989, a Virginia grandmother, Bonnie Finney, lost her grandson to child abuse. After his death, she tied a blue ribbon to the antenna of her van as a symbol to alert her community to the ultimate tragedy of child abuse. Blue represents the bruised and battered body of her grandchild. Therefore, it served as a constant reminder to fight for our children. She explained, “My grandchildren had suffered and battled so much throughout their young lives that it sickened me.” This grandmother’s simple idea to wear a blue ribbon caught on and spread to organizations across the country.
History of the Blue Pinwheel
Pinwheels are the national symbol for child abuse prevention. A pinwheel is a happy, uplifting symbol of childhood, and they represent the idea that all children should have safe, stable, and nurturing families.