The new year symbolizes a new start and many people make new year’s resolutions to declare what they are committing to do starting in this new year.
Why not make resolutions to help prevent child abuse and increase child well-being?
We added links to resources to help in these efforts.
First, consider the Five Protective Factors
The US Center for the Study of Social Policy has identified the following factors as important buffers to prevent child abuse:
Parental Resilience – The ability for parents to cope and bounce back from all kinds of challenges.
Social Connections – Friends, family members, neighbors, and other members of the community who provide emotional support and concrete assistance to parents.
Knowledge of Parenting and Child Development – Accurate information about raising young children and appropriate expectations for their behavior.
Concrete Support in Times of Need – Financial security to cover day-to-day expenses and unexpected costs that come up from time to time, access to formal supports like Medicaid, and informal support from social networks.
Social and Emotional Competence of Children – A child’s ability to interact positively with others and communicate their emotions effectively.
Consider how you can either help increase these protective factors in your life and in the life of parents and children in your life.
Decreasing Adverse Childhood Experiences
Additionally, our aim is to minimize and prevent adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) that can negatively affect a child’s well-being, functioning, and future. ACEs not only hurt a child now; it affects their lives through adulthood, including greater risk of developing health problems, being a victim of abuse or becoming an abuser, struggling with school and work, and so forth. The more of the 10 ACEs (pictured below) a child experiences, the more of these challenges a child faces. (For more information and to take a test on how many of these ACEs you’ve experienced, go here).
Resolve to take the steps you need to prevent and minimize adverse childhood experiences in the life of your child and/or children in your life.
We suggest these resolutions!
Here are some examples of resolutions you can make for 2018
I resolve to:
- call Child Welfare Services (1-800-331-1585 ) when I suspect child abuse and neglect.
- learn more about child abuse and the signs of child abuse. (more information on our Child Abuse FAQs page)
- learn more about ACEs and other information important to understanding child well being. See more information here
- ask a parent in my life how I can support them
- determine how I can help the parents in my life.
- Become a foster parent or adopt a child
- join an organization like CASA, Tulare County Child Abuse Prevention Council, Big Brothers, Big Sisters,to help children and their families
- support organizations who are helping children.
Parents, consider these resolutions. Utilize our resources and those in the community for support.
As a parent I resolve to:
- take time for self-care, such as rest, knowing it is important for all of us to be the best version of ourselves, including a good parent.
- spend more time with my children. See ideas and more information here
- be more patient with my children and seek support when this is difficult..
- read with my children often, knowing it helps my children to learn and also creates a special times of togetherness.
- play more with my children
- get involved in my community in an area that interests me,
- encourage my children in their interests and hobbies..
- listen to my children.
- talk to my children about safe touch and their rights regarding their bodies and encourage them to come to me if anyone makes them feel uncomfortable or unsafe. See resources here
- change the way I discipline my children in an age appropriate way.
- go to my local Family Resource Center to see what resources are available to me and my family.
- go to a Family Services parenting class to get support I need for my tough job as a parent. See more on FSTC here
- no longer be victim and seek out support if I’m being abused or experiencing mistreatment. More information and resources here
- go to a domestic violence class, offered by Family Services or a family resource center if I’m experiencing emotional, physical, mental, or sexual abuse by my partner or someone close in my life. Cont
Students, you have an important role in preventing child abuse.
As a student, I resolve to:
- no longer be silent when I see abuse of student by another kid or by an adult.
- help stop bullying, by reporting bullying, standing up to bullies, and speak up when my friend’s bully and make fun of someone.
- be a good and supportive friend. Listen.
- have the courage to call the Child Welfare Services number or report to a teacher if I suspect someone I know is experiencing child abuse, dating violence, or other abuse.
- have the courage to let a teacher or trusted adult know if I’m experiencing abuse.
- Join groups that are helping to prevent abuse.