October is Child Abuse Prevention Month, also known as the purple ribbon campaign. Speak up for kids and help raise awareness about the importance of calling Children’s Aid if you are concerned about the safety and well-being of a child or youth. Everyone in the community plays an important role; it takes a village to keep kids safe.
Please remember, you don’t need to be sure that a child is being abused or neglected – when you call The Children’s Aid Society of Haldimand and Norfolk to share your concerns, we will determine if a child is in danger. The CAS responds to reports about a child’s safety and provides child protection, family support or referrals to other community services. We work first and foremost to keep families together. The majority of children or youth we work with are in their family home or with kin. In 2016-17 the average number of children in care was 237, a 20% decrease over 5 years.
The CAS investigates allegations of abuse: physical, sexual or emotional; but also responds to concerns of neglect which might be something that is not being done for a child. We also connect families with services or arrange for volunteer assistance.
Dress Purple Day is Tuesday, October 24. The CAS is collaborating with local school boards to invite all staff and students to wear purple on this day, as well as all community members. Help raise awareness about child abuse #IBREAKthe silence.
What can you do? Wear purple on October 24, wear a purple ribbon in October to signify the importance of child abuse prevention, become a kin or foster caregiver, volunteer as a driver, mentor or board member. Please visit our website at www.cashn.on.ca for more information about our services or to see a video about reporting.
If you have a concern for a child or would like more information, please call The Children’s Aid Society of Haldimand and Norfolk at 1-888-227-5437, locally at (519) 587-5437.
Bernadette Gallagher, PhD, RSW