Over the years as a teacher, I have seen many types of abuse and neglect, sometimes very obvious and shocking, other times shocking and unexpected.
I’m afraid I don’t have much faith in the system within the UK for protecting children from the many types of abuse to which they are subjected. This is based on my own experience as a teacher and the knowledge that too many children have escaped through the net due to ‘lack of manpower’, ‘lack of funds’, or a multitude of other excuses.
Today I came across an article on http://www.utsandiego.com/ about The National Child Abuse Prevention Month 2014 and Pinwheel for Prevention. I haven’t heard of this before but as I am based in the UK this would not be unusual.
This is a national programme in the USA and the 2014 conference in New Orleans will be the 40th anniversary of the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA, P.L. 93-247). The Pinwheels for Prevention campaign calls attention to child abuse prevention.
The reason I’m writing this blog today is not because of the information contained in the article but the photo used. I’m sure there are lots of poignant pictures to make people sit up and take note of this dreadful problem but this particular photograph incited me to write.
This picture of the empty shoes represents the 10 children who were killed in the San Diego County in 2012 as the result of child abuse. The coloured gravel represents 39,000 children who were injured due to child abuse.
My life has been spent looking after the needs of children, whether my own family, children in school, charity work or the children I hope to help through the fostering service. I am, and have always been completely and utterly stunned by the injuries suffered by children at the hands of others.
This photo compelled me to write. Who do we think we are, as adults, to believe we have a right to hurt a child? With all my research, learning, experience and reading I cannot, or maybe, will not, understand.
The pinwheel serves as an uplifting reminder of childhood and the bright futures all children deserve.Image
This isn’t a national issue; this is a huge international problem.
I salute the efforts of all charities and campaigns involved in the prevention of child abuse I just wish, with all my heart, they were unnecessary.
I apologise for the rant but children are our future and they deserve the best of everything we can give them.
(In the UK The British Association for the Study and Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (BASPCAN) is a registered charity which aims to prevent physical, emotional and sexual abuse and neglect of children by promoting the physical, emotional, and social well-being of children.)