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Child Abuse Awareness Walk Saturday

By Erin Smith

Blue Pinwheels are being planted as part of the Pinwheels for Prevention campaign to raise awareness of Child Abuse and Prevention.

Each year children in North Carolina are the victims of child abuse or neglect. April is Child Abuse Awareness month and Bladen County will mark the occasion with a Child Abuse Awareness Walk on Saturday beginning at noon in the San Jose parking lot in Elizabethtown. 

The walk will leave the San Jose parking lot and travel down West Broad Street ending on the front lawn of the Bladen County Courthouse. Everyone is encouraged to wear blue as a symbol of Child Abuse Awareness Month.

Jill Sampson, with the Bladen County Department of Social Services, said at the Courthouse there will be a butterfly release and the names of the children who died as a result of abuse or neglect in North Carolina last year will be read aloud.  Refreshments will be available at the Courthouse following the walk.

In years past, there has also been a pinwheel garden competition but not this year. Sampson said businesses, churches and individuals who wish to honor the occasion with a pinwheel garden are encouraged to still do so. 

“There is no pinwheel garden competition this year,” said Sampson. She said the event has been scaled down in size from last year due to training that is taking place with the DSS staff on the NC FAST system. 

From July 2016 to June 2017, there were 127,404 investigated reports of child abuse and child neglect in North Carolina. In Bladen County, during the same time period, there were 336 investigated reports of child abuse and neglect, according to Prevent Child 

Everyone is encouraged to wear blue and come out and walk to help raise awareness of child abuse and neglect. 

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