MARINE CORPS AIR GROUND COMBAT CENTER TWENTYNINE PALMS -- "The Family Advocacy Program exists to assist victims and alleged offenders of child abuse and domestic violence by providing them with education and resources,” said Michele Godfrey, prevention and education specialist, FAP. “Our goal with Child Abuse Prevention Month is to provide additional information for the family and service members.”
Col. James B. Hanlon, Combat Center Chief of Staff, spoke at the event and thanked the service providers of FAP. Child Abuse Prevention Month is recognized nation-wide and aboard all military installations.
“Many people ask if child abuse actually happens on our installation,” Godfrey said. “Child abuse happens wherever there are children. We try to help people recognize what child abuse is.”
Following Hanlon’s speech, the event concluded with the placing of blue pinwheels into flowerpots outside the FAP building. Each of the event’s approximately twenty participants received their own pinwheel to add to a garden of pinwheels, representing the prevention of child abuse and neglect.
“The general symbols are the blue ribbon and the blue pinwheel,” Godfrey said. “They represent hope and good will toward children.”
According to Godfrey, Child Abuse Prevention Month has been recognized in schools, businesses, hospitals, and religious organizations since 1983. FAP will be offering two workshops this month and classes including a new parent support program to help educate the parents of young children. This is part of an effort to educate everyone about child abuse and neglect prevention.
“Our job is to offer resources to parents,” Godfrey said. “We know we are an important installation with lots of stressors on parents, so we help them out the best we can.”
For additional information, contact Godfrey at 830-6345. If you see child abuse or neglect report it to the installation FAP or call the National Child Abuse Hotline at 800-422-4253.