The Grayson County Children’s Advocacy Center would like to invite you to be a part of recognizing April as Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Month. Here are ways you can Stand Up for Kids:
Make a $10 donation ($12 for 2X-4X) and receive one of our blue shirts! Wear it every Friday in April- but especially on April 6 (Go Blue Day in Texas). You can now order online here or use the order form below. Submit order forms to firstname.lastname@example.org or bring them by 910 Cottonwood Drive Sherman, Texas 75090. For questions, call us at 903.957.0440. Groups, businesses, organizations, or schools ordering 10 or more shirts will have their name listed on the back of the shirt!
Sign up for one of our free prevention classes during the month and learn how to recognize and report abuse. We will hold classes at the CAC on April 3rd at 5:30 pm and April 17th at noon. Classes only last a little over an hour and contain valuable information for every adult in the community! We’ll also come to you to train your group at your location! Schedule or register by calling us at 903.957.0440.
Here are some practical ways you can STAND UP for the children in your life.
Speak up and report abuse. If you suspect abuse or neglect, report it to 1-800-252-5400 or txabusehotline.org. If the child is in imminent danger call 9-1-1.
Talk to your kids. Teach your kids that they are in charge of their bodies. Start with the basics like teaching them the proper names for body parts and which parts are private. They should know that no one has permission to touch them in a way that makes them uncomfortable.
Ask questions. Sometimes kids don’t disclose because they are never given the opportunity. Have a calm conversation with your children in which you ask if anyone has ever done something that has made them uncomfortable and give them the freedom to share. Check out these suggested conversation starters.
Notice the signs of abuse. Some signs that a child is experiencing abuse or neglect are more obvious than others. Some of the more common signs are unexplained injuries, changes in behavior, regression to behaviors they’ve outgrown, fear of going home or to someone’s house, changes in eating or sleeping, changes in school performance, lack of personal hygiene, risk-taking behaviors or inappropriate sexual behavior. Learn the signs of abuse. We offer free classes and will even come train your group on location! Remember, if you suspect abuse, you must report it.
Donate. Children who have been reported as victims of abuse or neglect may receive services from the Grayson County Children’s Advocacy Center. We rely on support from community members like you to provide critical services to these children.
Urge others to stand up. Help educate the community about child abuse. Direct others to our website to learn more. Host an educational event. Share our posts on social media. Invite a friend to join you for a tour of the center. Let others know what you have learned about keeping your kids safe.
Prevent opportunities for abuse. Learn about bystander intervention. Learn to identify concerning behaviors and set limits. Hold youth-serving organizations accountable. Before signing your kids up for an activity, make sure the organization does regular background checks, conducts personal and professional reference checks and has a youth protection policy in place that prevents isolated, one-on-one interaction between adults and children. All activities should be observable and interruptible in order to protect children from abuse and to protect adults from false allegations.