During the month of April, the Florida Department of Children and Families, along with Prevent Child Abuse, is engaging communities throughout Florida to renew a collaborative commitment to break the cycle of abuse and neglect, to coordinate efforts to promote awareness of healthy child development, and to empower positive parenting practices and the types of concrete support families need within their communities.

In recognition of Child Abuse Prevention Month, Clermont City Mayor Gail Ash read a proclamation on Child Abuse Prevention during a city council meeting, stating:

Every child deserves a promise of love and protection. Florida’s prosperity depends on fostering the healthy development of its four million children currently living, growing and learning. We must make children a top priority and take action to support the physical, social, emotional and educational development and competency of all children.

Research demonstrates that safe and nurturing relationships and stimulating and stable environments improve brain development and overall child well being, while neglectful and abusive experiences and unstable, stressful environments erode positive childhood outcomes.  Abuse and neglect of children can severely impact a child’s physical, mental, and emotional well-being, including school failure and criminal behavior that, in turn, causes lasting trauma and economic hardships, affecting all of society.  Research shows that effective child abuse prevention programs succeed due to partnerships and alliances among parents, state agencies, schools, faith-based, non-profit and business organizations, law enforcement and the judicial system; and that parents and caregivers who are connected to their local communities are more resilient and better able to provide safe environments and nurturing experiences for their children.

Every child deserves a promise of love and protection not just during the month of April but every day throughout the year.

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