Santa Clara County Recognizes April as Child Abuse Prevention Month
Families and Communities Working Together to Prevent
Child Abuse and Neglect and Support Healthy Relationships
SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF. – The County of Santa Clara recognizes April as Child Abuse Prevention Month to shine a light on the potentially devastating consequences of abuse and neglect, and the need to focus on prevention efforts. Throughout the year, the Santa Clara County Child Abuse Prevention Council and the Social Services Agency’s Department of Family and Children’s Services (DFCS) continue to partner with the community to try and ensure that all parents and caregivers have access to the resources, support, knowledge, and skills they need to care for their children in a manner that fosters healthy childhood development and resilience.
Surrounding children with healthy relationships (defined as being physically, emotionally, and sexually safe, respectful, caring and kind) at home, school, and in the community, not only prevents child abuse, but enhances healthy child and adult development, while serving the goals of long term community wellness and violence prevention. Additionally, community and government collaboration to reduce poverty, homelessness, racism and bigotry, domestic violence, and children’s exposure to violence in all its forms are fundamentally important in this effort.
In support of Child Abuse Prevention Month, and to help raise awareness about the important connection between healthy relationships, healthy families and healthy communities, The Child Abuse Prevention Council has partnered with DFCS, First 5, and the Santa Clara County Office of Education to promote a VTA ad campaign with the message, “Healthy Relationships are…Safe, Respectful, and Kind;” thousands of posters to that effect are being distributed to schools*, government offices, community agencies, and selected Courts county-wide. The community can find more information on ‘Tools to Thrive’ by visiting www.healthyrelationshipsscc.org.
”Child Abuse Prevention involves thinking of children and families as part of a larger community,” said DFCS Acting Director, Daniel Little. “The focus of DFCS is to help create a system in which families can receive assistance and support within their individual communities, and not have to be drawn into the child protection system to access services. We need to help build a robust prevention continuum in and around the communities we live in and serve. Our prevention initiatives should align to create an environment where children never have to be removed from their parents.”
*Due to the current COVID-19 Pandemic, your Healthy Relationship orders may be delayed until after the Shelter in Place Order. We apologize for this inconvenience.
CHILD ABUSE REPORTING IN SANTA CLARA COUNTY
The Santa Clara County Department of Family and Children’s Services (DFCS) operates a Child Abuse and Neglect Center (CANC) which screens calls 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. To report suspected cases of child abuse and neglect, call (833) SCC–KIDS / (833) 722-5437.
CHILD ABUSE FACTS & STATISTICS
- Approximately 3.5 million reports of child abuse are made in the U.S. each year, involving 6 million children.
- There are 58,000 reports of child abuse made in the Bay Area every year.
- Learn more about the impact of child abuse in Santa Clara County at: https://www.sccgov.org/sites/cac/Documents/EconomicsOfAbuse_SantaClara%20(1).pdf
# # #
About the County of Santa Clara, California
The County of Santa Clara government serves a diverse, multi-cultural population of 1.9 million residents in Santa Clara County, the sixth largest county in California. With more than 70 agencies/departments and nearly 22,000 employees, the County of Santa Clara plans for the needs of a dynamic community, offers quality services, and promotes a healthy, safe and prosperous community for all. The County provides essential services, such as public health and environmental protection; behavioral health and medical services through the County of Santa Clara Health System, including Santa Clara Valley Medical Center (Hospital and Clinics), O’Connor Hospital and Saint Louise Regional Hospital; child and adult protection services; homelessness prevention and solutions; roads, parks and libraries; emergency response to disasters; protection of minority communities and those under threat; access to a fair criminal justice system, and scores of other services, particularly for those members of our community in the greatest need.