April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and the City of Falls Church is working to raise awareness about the safety and well-being of children. A pinwheel garden will be planted at the entrance of Cherry Hill Park (312 Park Ave.) on Monday, April 11, at 7:00 p.m., followed by a proclamation at the City Council meeting at 7:30 p.m. in Council Chambers of City Hall (300 Park Avenue).
The pinwheel is the symbol of child abuse prevention and reflects childhood hope, health, and happiness. Pinwheel gardens are planted by organizations, schools, and businesses in communities throughout the nation during National Child Abuse Prevention Month. Community members and businesses can show their support by purchasing and planting a pinwheel in a yard or flower pot.
In April and throughout the year, the City of Falls Church encourages all individuals and organizations to play a role in making the community a better place for children and families. By ensuring that parents have the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to care for their children, we can help promote the social and emotional well-being of children and youth and prevent child maltreatment within families and communities.
Protective factors are the strengths and resources families draw on during difficult times to shield them from life's stresses. Research shows that when parents possess protective factors, the risk for neglect and abuse diminish and optimal outcomes for children, youth, and families are promoted. Major protective factors include knowledge of parenting, knowledge of child development, parental resilience, social connections, and concrete supports.
In support of these efforts, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Children's Bureau, Office on Child Abuse and Neglect, together with Child Welfare Information Gateway, and the FRIENDS National Resource Center for Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention developed the 2021/2022 Prevention Resource Guide. The guide provides more information about protective factors and highlights examples of innovative prevention approaches being implemented by communities across the country.
For additional information and resources, please contact Housing and Human Services at 703-248-5005 (TTY 711).