Wear Blue campaign brings awareness to child abuse

Reporter: Tiffany Rizzo

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

The Children’s Advocacy Center of Southwest Florida is taking a hard stance to stop the abuse and neglect of children.

The Children’s Advocacy Center has launched its Wear Blue campaign and they are spreading the word through social media.

They even went before the Lee County Board of Commissioners for a resolution declaring April Child Abuse Prevention Month.

According to the Children’s Advocacy Center, one in five children will be abused by their 18th birthday. About 90% of victimized children are abused by someone they know and trust.

The Children’s Advocacy Center of Southwest Florida said a lot of child abuse prevention is making children and parents aware that this is happening in the community.

They have served more than 400 clients this year providing a safe place for children to be heard and receive therapy.

They work with the Department of Children and Families and law enforcement.

The center also offers parenting classes and they are seeking to expand their programs.

“We are starting a community awareness and outreach program,” said Matthew Parkinson, with the Children’s Advocacy Center. “What we’re going to aim to do along with our prevention message is get out in the community. So make ourselves known who we are, spread our message, you know, we’re going to try and be at community events. One day, we’d like to be in the schools.”

Parkinson said his group identifies children who have been abused and tries to help them heal.

“We have our family Alliance team, as soon as we identify that there’s an issue, we’re capable of making a referral to them to get therapy started right away,” Parkinson said.

For more information, visit the organization’s website.

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