April is national child abuse prevention month. As a pediatric care provider in your community, we care deeply about the health, safety and wellbeing of all our kids. So we are taking this month as an opportunity to raise awareness about the issue, and show you how you can help when it comes to the problem of child maltreatment.
Last year, approximately 6,000 children were in the care of Child Protective Services in the Houston area. That means thousands of kids right here in our community were victims of abuse or neglect, and were removed from their homes. That number does not include the child abuse that went unreported.
Abuse and neglect come in various forms, and it isn’t always the way it’s portrayed in mainstream media. Often times child abuse happens as a result of drug addiction, and it tends to happen as part of a cycle- parents who have been abused themselves, then cause harm to their children.
Our children deserve to be protected. They deserve a childhood full of hope, joy, safety, and happiness. Luckily, there are a number of organizations in the Houston area that are doing their part to stop child abuse, and your support can make a huge difference.
Child Advocates mobilizes court appointed volunteers to break the vicious cycle of child abuse. They speak up for abused children who are lost in the system and guide them into safe environments where they can thrive. Child Advocates volunteers act as the eyes and ears for a judge on CPS related cases, and act as a confidant and support for children during their time in foster care.
DePelchin Children’s Center believes that every child deserves to be safe and healthy. An accredited foster care and adoption agency, DePelchin serves the most vulnerable children and families in Texas and works to break the cycles of abuse and neglect.
The Children’s Assessment Center (The CAC) provides services to sexually abused children and their families. They employ an effective multidisciplinary team approach in the prevention, assessment, and treatment of child sexual abuse and child sex trafficking victims.
Casa de Esperanza de los Ninos strives to break the cycle of child abuse and neglect for at-risk infants, children and their families by providing comprehensive residential and family support programs that transform people and communities.
Most importantly, if you suspect abuse in your community, please report it to the Texas Abuse Hotline at 800-252-5400 or online at txabusehotline.org.