Front, left to right: Julianne Gonzales and Diego Rodriguez. Second row, left to right: San Marcos Mayor Susan Narvaiz, Crystal Valtierra, San Marcos Housing Authority’s Bonnie Pecina, Roxanne’s House/Hays Caldwell Women’s Center’s (HCWC) Melissa Rodriguez, the Greater San Marcos Youth Council’s (GSMYC) Julia Ramsey-New, HCWC’s Marla Johnson , GSMYC Kara Freeman and Pam Franklin. Third row, left to right: Youth Service’s Bureau’s Julie Hollar, City Councimember Kim Porterfield, GSMYC’s Craig Corbin and Nina Meadows, City Councilmember John Thomaides, Court Appointed Special Advocates’ (CASA) Norma Blackwell, HCWC’s Elva Gonzalez, and CASA’s Tricia Schneider. Photo by Don Anders.
Representatives from Hays Caldwell Women’s Center (HCWC), Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), the Greater San Marcos Youth Council (GSMYC), the San Marcos Housing Authority and the Youth Service Bureau joined San Marcos city councilmembers in proclaiming April as National Child Abuse Prevention and Awarness Month.
The month was established to promote the prevention of child abuse and to support the raising of children in a safe and nurturing environment. According to Childhelp.org, a report of child abuse is made every ten seconds and almost five children die everyday as a result of child abuse. More than three out of four are under the age of four. Child abuse occurs at every socioeconomic level, across ethnic and cultural lines, within all religions and at all levels of education. In spite of awareness efforts the rate of child abuse has risen during the past 15 years.
The first National Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month was proclaimed in 1983 by President Ronald Reagan.