A young child’s brain forms more than 700 connections every second. It is not just the family’s responsibility to help their children develop positive connections. It is the whole community’s responsibility to provide rich soil for all children to grow into a vibrant flower. For April’s National Child Abuse Prevention we hope everyone finds ways to create nurturing environments to build positive brain connections and create happy, safe childhoods.

Sieda envisions communities of resilient citizens who are involved, self-reliant, and contribute positively to their families and communities. That means all of our programs strive to support families to make healthier households to prevent child abuse, maltreatment, and neglect. Although it is all of Sieda’s commitment our Family Support Services work daily to achieve the goal of eliminating child abuse. Programs such as Family Development and Self Sufficiency (FaDSS), Maternal Infant Early Childhood Home Visitation (MIECHV), and Parents as Teachers (PAT).

Our staff has been planting beautiful pinwheel gardens in support across our counties. As well as, working with many local child abuse prevention groups, to spread the message. Here is just a few of the activities our Family Support staff shared.

  • “The Week of the Young Child” April April 10th – April 16th celebrating early learning, young children, their teachers, families, and communities. Resources: WOYC Activities
  • Wapello County, Every Friday, April 9, 16, 23, 30, it is Wear Blue Day. Show your support by wearing blue.
  • Appanoose County Family Alliance & CPPC – Virtual Family Game Night – April 11th
  • Color Out Child Abuse Family Fun Run/Walk on April 17 – 24th, Virtual. The Appanoose Family Alliance, Child Abuse Prevention Council works with several organizations in the county to ensure that ALL children have a safe and healthy childhood.
  • Resilient Communities Wapello County – Scavenger Hunt at several locations in Ottumwa.

Child abuse can happen to any child throughout Iowa, no matter their family background.  Learn the facts about child abuse in Iowa. Multiple risk factors among parents, such as stress, isolation, substance abuse, intergenerational trauma, and similar factors, are typically present in a household where a child is being abused or neglected. The trauma that occurs during childhood can strongly affect the children throughout their lifetime. It is up to all of us to make great childhoods happen.

If you suspect the consistent mistreatment of a child, take action by calling the Iowa Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-362-2178.