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We can all help strengthen families

April 29, 2011
By Julie Moberg , Daily Press

ESCANABA - April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

This month and throughout the year, MSU Extension's Welcome Newborns program encourages all individuals and organizations to play a role in making Delta County a better place for families. By ensuring that parents have the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to care for their children, we can help prevent child abuse and neglect by strengthening families and communities.

Research shows that five important factors are present in healthy families. Promoting these factors is among the most effective ways to reduce the risk of child abuse and neglect. They are:

- Nurturing and attachment

- Knowledge of parenting and of child and youth development

- Parental resilience

- Social Connections

- Concrete supports for parents

April is a time to celebrate the important role that communities play in protecting children. Everyone's participation is critical.

Focusing on ways to promote the five protective factors, in every interaction with families, is the best thing our community can do to strengthen families and prevent child abuse and neglect.

To kick off April as Child Abuse Prevention Month, Pinwheel "Gardens" will be planted across the state of Michigan in April.

Thousands of pinwheels will spin in courthouse, school, library and city hall "gardens" in more than 28 Michigan counties throughout the month of April to call attention to the importance of child abuse and neglect prevention. The pinwheel is a national symbol for child abuse and neglect for prevention because it is reflective of the bright future all children deserve.

Activities in April promote the prevention of child abuse and neglect.

On Saturday, the Children's Fun Festival sponsored by the Great Start Initiative, will be held at the Delta Plaza Mall from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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Julie Moberg is snap ed supervising extension educator at MSU Extension Delta County.



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