Child Abuse Prevention Month ceremony held
National Child Abuse Prevention Month is being commemorated during April with a wide range of activities in Union County.
WIBH radio in Anna again this year is joining in the commemoration of National Child Abuse Prevention Month.
The radio station is spearheading a number of special events during April in the Union County area as part of its WIBH Blue Ribbons for Kids campaign.
The schedule of events kicked off Tuesday morning, April 3, and continues throughout the month.
April 3 was designated as Proclamation Day. A ceremony was held at the Union County Courthouse in Jonesboro.
Community members were invited to join local city and county officials, along with representatives of child advocacy organizations and agencies, in recognizing April’s observance.
Displayed on the grounds in front of the courthouse were more than 30 blue images of boys and girls. The images serve as symbolic efforts to help promote child abuse prevention awareness.
Organizers said the images of the boys and girls were created by the shop class at Anna-Jonesboro Community High School.
The images were painted blue by members of local Girl Scout Troop 8546 as their Silver Award project.
Local businesses and other supporters are renting or buying the blue boys and girls to help support child abuse prevention efforts in the community.
Union County Sheriff Scott Harvel read a proclamation which declared April to be Child Abuse Prevention Month.
The proclamation read by the sheriff declared that “child abuse and neglect is a complex ongoing problem in our society, affecting many children in Union County.
“Every child is entitled to be loved, cared for and nurtured, feel secure and be free from verbal, sexual, emotional and physical abuse, and neglect.
“It is the responsibility of every adult who comes in contact with a child to protect that child’s inalienable right to a safe and nurturing childhood.
“Union County, Illinois, has dedicated individuals and organizations who work daily to counter the problem
of child maltreatment and to help parents obtain the assistance they need.
“Our communities are stronger when all citizens become aware of child maltreatment prevention and become involved in supporting parents to raise their children in a safe and nurturing environment.
“Effective child abuse prevention programs succeed because of partnerships among families, social service agencies, schools, religious and civic organizations, law enforcement agencies and the business community.
“All citizens, community agencies, faith organizations, businesses will work to increase their efforts to support families.”
Those who attended Tuesday morning’s ceremony were invited to join in signing the proclamation as a show of support for child abuse prevention awareness.
Other activities which are planned during April’s observance of National Child Abuse Prevention Month in Union County follow:
April 6, National Wear Blue Day. Everyone is invited to wear blue to show support for a stand against child abuse. The blue represents the bruises of child abuse and neglect.
April 9, Blue March on Main Street, Anna, 3:45 p.m. The community is invited to wear blue and to bring family friendly signs to join others at the flag pole at Anna-Jonesboro Community High School for a march down Main Street in Anna.
April 13, PJ’s and Movie Night at Kiki’s CoffeeHouse, downtown Anna, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Everyone can bring blankets, pillows and PJ’s for a showing of “Hop.” Donations of items to help local kids in need are welcomed. Snacks will be provided by the Anna Baking Company.
April 9-13, Courage Collections Days, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. “Courage items for kids” will be collected. The items will help kids through the abuse recovery process. A list of items which are needed can be found at wibhradio.com. Information also is available by calling the station at 833-9424.
Courage Collection Day sites in the community include, by date:
April 9, Union County Hospital, Anna. April 10, Masters Choice Seed Corn, Anna. April 11, A-J National Bank, South Main Street downtown Anna location.
April 12, Children’s Medical & Mental Health Resource Network, Anna, sponsored by Swafford Pediatrics. April 13, Immanuel Praise & Worship Center near Cobden.