Prayer vigil held for Child Abuse Prevention Month

Published: Apr. 1, 2021 at 4:46 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - April 1 marks the beginning of Child Abuse Prevention Month, and members of the Central Louisiana community gathered for a prayer vigil to recognize those that have been affected.

Families gathered in prayer at the Pineville flag pole to bring awareness to the issues of child abuse and neglect.

Wade Bond, the Executive Director for the Children’s Advocacy Network, says the last 12 months have been a struggle dealing with COVID-19. He says more children have been in isolation and haven’t had access to safe adults, which has lead to more children being abused.

“We are all impacted either directly or indirectly by child abuse. When strong communities come together, they build stronger families and stronger families are able to build stronger children,” said Bond.

Community members said that events like this are important, but it will take a full effort year-round to help the families that are impacted. Vanessa Sanders attended the vigil and said she and her husband recently started a program called The Last Adam’s Initiative, which is a mentorship program to help the youth that is at most risk.

“We can’t just sit around and say it’s not our problem. If you are in the community or a neighbor and see something, you need to report something,” said Sanders.

The Children’s Advocacy Network says community members can help by becoming a CASA volunteer or donating to the local food banks to support the children.

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