April is child abuse prevention month

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Juniorís House Child Advocacy Center wants to remind everyone that April is Child Abuse Prevention Month.

Every day in our country 1,900 children are abused. Child abuse continues to be prevalent in our society with one in ten children being sexually abused before they turn 18 years old.

Child abuse prevention and services are imperative in every community because left untreated, child abuse is linked to higher rates of drug use, teen pregnancy, mental illness, and even shorter life spans. The economic impact to our society is significant.

Providing free services to child abuse victims is indispensable in every community and Marshall County has ensured that the children have a place to receive services.

Juniorís House Inc. was established in 2003 in honor of a special little boy named Junior who tragically died as the result of child abuse. Captain Joyce McConnell engaged the Lincoln County community and opened a child advocacy center to ensure that child abuse victims receive the services and support they need and to honor the brief life of six-year-old Junior. Since that time, Juniorís House has continued to expand to Marshall, Moore, and Bedford counties, and thousands of child abuse victims have been served.

The Marshall County community and the 17th Judicial District have continued to be supportive of Juniorís House and have shown a great commitment to ensuring that children have access to free services when tragedy strikes their young lives.

The 6th annual CASA luncheon will be held in Lewisburg on April 26 from noon until 1 p.m. at the Lewisburg First United Methodist Churchís McKnight Center.

The luncheon is a fund raiser for the groupís CASA program, and the featured speaker will be Lynne Farrar. the state director of CASA with over 32 years of helping children and families across the state.

CASA, or court appointed special advocates, is a Juniorís House program that matches local volunteers to serve neglected or abused children in the court system by representing the childís best interests in an often confusing and chaotic time. Marshall County currently has eight CASA volunteers but needs always needs more to serve children in the community.

RSVPs for the event are requested by April 15.

On May 15, Juniorís House will hold their Blue Ribbon Walk at the Lincoln County Fairgrounds to honor Juniorís memory and raise awareness about child abuse. That event begins at 9:30 a.m. and entry forms are available at Juniorís House of via their Facebook page. Registration by April 19 ensures a t-shirt from the event.

Photo submitted

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month and Juniorís House, the child advocacy group serving Marshall County, wants to raise awareness of the issue and of local solutions. Pictured are the ďHometown HeroesĒ of Marshall County, working on the front lines every day to protect children from child abuse and find justice for them. Those represented are the Marshall County District Attorneyís office, Marshall County Sheriffís Department, Lewisburg Police Department, Marshall County Youth Services Office, Marshall County Health Department, the Department of Childrenís Services, and Juniorís House Child Advocacy Center. The pinwheels represent those children that are served every day, those children that donít have a voice, and need a voice to stand up for them.