Every April during National Child Abuse Prevention month communities take action to recommit to providing safe, stable, and nurturing environments for children that are free from abuse and neglect.
This year, Soldiers, Families and civilians can show their support by picking a pinwheel from one of the gardens planted in facilities throughout the Wiesbaden community.
U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden Family Advocacy Program and a local Girl Scout troop teamed up to create over a dozen pinwheel gardens for the initiative.
“The collaboration with the Girl Scouts shows how children can play a positive role in promoting a healthy community,” said Sara Clow, Family Advocacy Program manager.
The Girl Scouts painted the boxes and helped prepare the gardens, which include messages of prevention.
“The collaboration also helps the FAP reinforce the child-abuse prevention program,” Clow said.
In Army communities, ACS-FAP is charged with providing education and awareness to help prevent domestic abuse, child abuse and neglect.
“Many people become uncomfortable when they hear the primary purpose of the ACS-FAP. The discomfort is a result of the stigma related to both child and spousal abuse,” said Clow.
Clow says the ACS-FAP offers a multi-faceted approach for child abuse prevention which includes annual mandatory training, resources and education along with a multi-disciplinary staff to work with children and their families.
The FAP operates as a commanders program, supporting commanders and senior enlisted advisors ensuring FAP policies, procedures and leadership responsibilities are understood at the top.
“Efforts of preventing child abuse can be tackled in various ways. The important thing to remember is that whatever works best in preventing child abuse, is what we all should strive to achieve,” said Clow.
Pinwheels for Prevention campaign started in 2008 and grew from the need to create a national symbol for child abuse prevention. The organization Prevent Child Abuse American says the pinwheel connects to the child in us all and stands for the chance at the healthy, happy and full lives all children deserve.
Pinwheel gardens can be found at the Wiesbaden Fitness Center, Health Clinic, Library, Post Office, Dining Facility, AFN, Chapel and all CYSS facilities on Clay Kaserne; and at the Wiesbaden Entertainment Center, Chapel, and all CYSS facilities on Hainerberg.
(Hellen Fakolujo, FAP contract specialist, contributed to this article.)