Bring differing factions and communities together to protect children from child abuse and neglect.
Although you would think protecting children from abuse and neglect would be a cause that brings people together, that is not always the case – especially when warring politics and special interests are involved. But if there is a will, there is a way! McFarland illuminated that way when it recommended that a state agency extend the olive branch to adversaries and host a statewide candlelight ceremony on a single night during Child Abuse Prevention Month. The key goal was to have communities across the state each host an event on the same evening, kicking off at 7 p.m. local time with an address from the governor on the statehouse lawn. These community events included child-advocacy groups, local leaders, mayors and other elected officials, judicial members, county CPS agencies and local news media.
With the help of a lot of willing souls and one go-getter state staffer (thanks Jake!), we collectively made it happen! Communities from more than 80 counties came together in a single night in April to collectively raise awareness about child abuse and neglect – and remind residents, businesses and community leaders that their eyes and ears are the radar system that helps protect children at risk.
“This was great! What a feat it was to make this happen!”