JOIN ALABAMA CASA NETWORK's COMMITMENT TO HELPING VICTIMS OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT HEAL, AND MAKING SURE ALL CHILDREN FEEL SAFE AND LOVED.
Anytime a child is abused or neglected, it’s a tragedy – one that all too often scars victims for a lifetime. The latest statistics from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services are sobering:
- Child Protective Services agencies across the United States received some 3.6 million referrals of abuse or neglect involving 6.6 million children in 2014.
- An estimated 1,580 children died from child abuse or neglect in 2014, nearly three-quarters of them younger than age 3.
Studies have shown that children who have suffered abuse or neglect are more likely to struggle in school, have run-ins with law enforcement, experience homelessness or abuse drugs or alcohol. Research also shows that abused children are more apt to grow up to abuse their own kids.
At Alabama CASA Network, we help abused and neglected children heal so they can live happier, safer lives. CASA volunteers – court-appointed special advocates – make sure kids don’t get lost in the overburdened legal and social service systems or languish in unsupportive foster homes. CASA volunteers stay with children until their court case is closed and the child is placed in a safe, permanent home.
During National Child Abuse Prevention Month, we invite our community to learn more about the work we do and consider becoming a CASA volunteer. If you would like to learn more about volunteering for a CASA program in your area, click here.
Not everyone can be a CASA volunteer, but everyone can be an advocate by taking steps to make our community safer for our children:
- Be mindful of the signs of abuse and neglect in children, such as a lack of adult supervision, extreme passivity or aggression or poor hygiene.
- Be aware of warning signs in parents, such as showing indifference or rarely touching or looking at their child, constant verbal criticism, demands for perfection, blaming the child for family problems or other irrational behaviors.
- If you think a child is in immediate danger, don’t hesitate. Call 911.
- If you believe a child is being abused or neglected, report your suspicions confidentially to our state’s toll-free child abuse hotline at 1-888-421-1266.
Working together, we can end abuse and neglect so that every child has a chance to thrive.