The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) report that risk factors for child abuse and neglect include the social isolation of families and parents' lack of understanding about children's needs, child development and parenting skills. The CDC also reports that protective factors for families include a supportive family network, support for basic needs, nurturing parenting skills, and communities that support parents and take ownership in preventing abuse.1
Abuse and neglect during childhood can have harmful effects that last a lifetime. The ultimate goal in child abuse and neglect prevention is working to prevent it from happening in the first place. The issues surrounding child abuse and neglect are complex, often stemming from unhealthy relationships and environments.
Supporting parenting skills and family relationship approaches can provide parents and caregivers with support while encouraging positive parenting skills, and teaching child development and behavior management.2 These parenting skills have the potential to protect children from family violence and the long-term consequences that violence can bring. 3, 4
CCHAPS data shows 65% of parents of children aged 0–5 and 60% of parents of children aged 6–14 are coping very well with daily parenthood demands. This would indicate 35% of parents of young children and 40% of older children could benefit from parenting resources or support in the six-county service region.
3 Knox, M. S., Burkhart, K., & Hunter, K. E. (2011). ACT Against Violence Parents Raising Safe Kids program: Effects on maltreatment related parenting behaviors and beliefs. Journal of Family Issues, 32, 55-74. 117.
4 Portwood, S. G., Lambert, R. G., Abrams, L. P., & Nelson, E. B. (2011). An evaluation of the Adults and Children Together (ACT) Against Violence Parents Raising Safe Kids program. Journal of Primary Prevention, 32, 147-1