“Over the past year, we have heard that child abuse cases have risen due to stress while at the same time reports have decreased due to children not being in school or around other people. This year more than ever, it is important that we raise awareness about child abuse prevention and positive parenting and encourage families to support each other and reach out for help when needed.” -Prevent Child Abuse Illinois
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. The most important thing we can do to help children thrive is to support families before they reach a crisis.
Blue ribbons and blue bows, often used and seen during April, are a traditional symbol of child abuse awareness. They remind us of the seriousness of child abuse and neglect, and the need for its prevention. Many communities across the country conduct Blue Ribbon or Blue Bow campaigns to draw attention to Child Abuse Prevention Month.
The Blue Ribbon Campaign began in Virginia in 1989 when a grandmother, Bonnie W. Finney, tied a blue ribbon to the antenna of her van “to make people wonder.” The story she told to inquisitive community members was a tragic story about the abuse of her grandchildren, which ultimately led to the brutal death of her grandson.
The story of Bonnie Finney demonstrates the effect that just one person can have on raising public awareness of child abuse and in promoting its prevention. Since Bonnie Finney first tied that blue ribbon to her van antenna in 1989, millions of people across the country have participated in blue ribbon campaigns.
The Blue Pinwheel
Pinwheels are the national symbol for child abuse and neglect prevention. The pinwheel represents our hope that every child will be raised in a healthy, safe and nurturing environment. It is also a call to action, encouraging people everywhere to recognize that children are our future and that we all have a role to play in keeping them safe. All children deserve great childhoods.