ORLANDO, Fla. – (October 19, 2020)
From October 26–30, the YMCA of Central Florida will again participate in the Five Days of Action campaign to raise awareness and provide free resources for child abuse and neglect prevention. It’s part of the Y’s commitment to keeping kids safe, especially due to the added stress levels many are facing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to research from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), “increased stress levels among parents is often a major predictor of physical abuse and neglect of children… The support systems that many at-risk parents rely on are no longer available in many areas due to limited contact during the pandemic. Child protection agencies are experiencing strained resources with fewer workers available, making them unable to conduct home visits in certain areas. Since some children are not going to school, teachers and school counselors are unable to witness the signs of abuse and report to the proper authorities” (SAMHSA 2020).
At the Y, caring for and protecting our kids is our top priority. We conduct rigorous background checks and screenings of our team members who work with any child, plus conduct annual training with all staff on child abuse prevention. As we continue to do our part to remain vigilant, Five Days of Action is an open invitation for our parents, caretakers, and adults at the Y and across our community to join with the Y in this vital effort. We all have an important role to play to keep our kids safe.
— Dr. Beth Boyer Kollas, VP Corporate Compliance & Risk Management, YMCA of Central Florida
The Y will be posting tips and information on their social media and also providing free resources on the Y website, including an educational video on the importance of the "3 Habits of Keeping Kids Safe: 'Know, See, Respond'” tips for talking to children, how to identify and avoid potentially situations, and helpful links to other free resources.
To learn more, visit ymcacf.org/5days.
About the YMCA of Central Florida
The YMCA of Central Florida is one of the area’s largest nonprofits, serving hundreds of thousands of Central Floridians per year through a focus on Youth Development, Healthy Living, and Social Responsibility. With a Christian-based mission to improve lives and communities, it operates YMCA locations across six counties. This mission is expanded beyond the four walls of the Y through community-based programs to combat chronic disease, boost children’s after-school safety and learning, and strengthen neighborhoods. To learn more, visit ymcacf.org and follow on Facebook or Instagram.