Pinwheel Play Day Provides Free Fun, Child Abuse Awareness

Marion County Children ServicesApril is Child Abuse Awareness Month and Marion County Children Services (MCCS) is encouraging the public to “be a voice for a child” and speak out against abuse and neglect. To bring awareness to the issue as well as to provide a free, safe, family day of fun, they are inviting everyone to their sixth annual “Pinwheels for Prevention Play Day” from 9:30 am to 1:00 pm on Saturday, April 6, 2013.

The free family event will be held at MCCS, 1680 Marion-Waldo Road, south of the Marion Centre mall.

The Pinwheel Play Day is part of a national “Pinwheels for Prevention” campaign throughout April. This year, the community is invited to help “plant” 686 pinwheels in front of Children Services.

“Each of the 686 pinwheels we’ll plant represents a ‘voice’ for a child, someone who spoke out against abuse or neglect,” explains Terrie Robinson, Community Education coordinator. “It’s a powerful symbol that also reflects the number of investigations our agency conducted in 2012.”

The number of pinwheels has continued to grow each year with 679 last year and 647 in 2011. Children Service’s Executive Director Jacqueline Ringer said they believe the increase is not a reflection of more abuse, but a result of better awareness and reporting by local residents.

In addition to planting pinwheels, children and families will be invited to visit other activity “stations” sponsored by community partner agencies and groups.

The Boys & Girls Club of Marion County is holding their 2nd Annual 5k Run/Walk and Kid’s Fun Run at this event as well. The Kids’ Fun Run, for those 11 years and under, is free, while the 5k Run/Walk is $25 on race day.

Registration for the 5k and kids run opens at 8:30 am on race day. The Kid’s Fun Run starts at 9:30 am and the adult 5k starts at 10:00 am. You can learn more about the 5k by clicking here.

“We’re inviting the entire community to share in this special day to promote safe children, strong families and supportive communities,” explains Ringer.

As part of the month of awareness, the Marion County Commissioners issued a proclamation honoring the work done by Marion County Children services and encouraging the public to participate in preventing abuse.

For more information, contact Marion County Children Services at 740-389-2317, visit, or find them on Facebook.

The following is the proclamation issued by the County Commissioners.

WHEREAS; our nation recognizes each April as Child Abuse Awareness Month; and

WHEREAS; “Pinwheels for Prevention” is a public awareness campaign of Prevent Child Abuse America, and Marion County Children Services is leading the campaign in Marion County; and

WHEREAS; Children Services’ annual “Pinwheel Playday” event represents the partnership with other community organizations who work together to heighten awareness and draw attention to the need for preventing – and reporting – child abuse; and

WHEREAS; Pinwheels for Prevention encourages each of us to “Be a Voice for a Child” and to encourage the reporting of suspected cases of child abuse and neglect; and

WHEREAS; Marion County will display 686 pinwheels during the month of April to represent the voices who spoke up on behalf of children and the resulted in investigations of child abuse or neglect in our community in one year (2012); and

WHEREAS; Marion County Children Services is an agency in Marion County solely dedicated to protecting children who are abused, neglected and maltreated, and that the agency is vitally important to the overall health of our community; this mission cannot be accomplished by one agency, we all need to do our part to assist in breaking the vicious cycle of abuse.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED; that the Board of County Commissioners of Marion County, Ohio, hereby proclaims the month of April 2013 as “CHILD ABUSE AWARENESS MONTH” in Marion County and urges all citizens to be a voice for a child.  Together, we can achieve the vision of “Safe Children, Strong Families and Supportive Communities.”

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