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Governor McAuliffe Announces $17.5 Million Federal Preschool Expansion Grant

Governor McAuliffe Announces Creation of Children’s Cabinet and the Commonwealth Council on Childhood Success

Look Them In Their Eyes!

Positive Parenting Tip of the Day:

Look children in their eyes when you’re talking. Become the child’s size – bend or sit down to get on their level. Then the child won’t feel so small, and you will feel closer to each other.

~Ashlee W. Roberts
800-CHILDREN Parent Helpline Director

“Back To School” Tips from PCAA

As summer draws to an end and the kiddo’s settle into a new school year, take a moment to check out these

“Back To School Tips” from Prevent Child Abuse America


Hug Your Child!

Hug your child

Parenting Tip of the Day:  Feeling loved and safe helps children build confidence and a sense of worth.

  • Physical affection is important. Hug them often! Be sure to respect their boundaries though.
  • Children need to hear “I love you.”  They can never hear those words enough!
  • Reassure your child that you will ALWAYS love him or her – even when you don’t like certain behaviors.


~Ashlee W. Roberts

800-CHILDREN Parent Helpline Director

Discipline and Punishment are NOT the same!

Quotation-Daniel-J-Siegel-discipline-education-children-consequences-forget-Meetville-Quotes-230967  Parenting Tip of the Day:

  Discipline is a word that is often misused. Many people equate discipline with punishment – or at least believe punishment   is the way to help people achieve discipline. To DISCIPLINE means to TEACH – not to PUNISH! 

  ~Ashlee W. Roberts
  800-CHILDREN Parent Helpline Director

Keep Children Safe At School!

school prevention


Parenting Tip of the Day: Keeping children safe at school involves more than just making sure the playground equipment is safe for them to play on! As much as we don’t want to accept it, child sexual abuse can happen anywhere…including at school! Talk to your child’s school administrators about what they are doing to keep your children safe while they are in their care! Don’t wait until it’s too late to get the conversation started.

~Ashlee W. Roberts 800-CHILDREN Parent Helpline Director

McAuliffe announces creation of Children’s Cabinet and the Commonwealth Council on Childhood Success

Governor McAuliffe signed an Executive Order yesterday creating a cabinet solely dedicated to the education, health, safety, and welfare of Virginia’s children and youth. The newly launched Children’s Cabinet will develop and implement a policy agenda that will help better serve Virginia’s children and will also foster collaboration between state and local agencies.  As a part of that effort, the Governor also signed a second Executive Order establishing the Commonwealth Council on Childhood Success. This Council will be chaired by Lt. Governor Northam and will focus on improving the health, education, and well-being of our youngest children. CONTINUE READING…

Children Must Be Taught How To Listen!

taught how to listenPositive Parenting Tip of the Day: After giving your child directions, ask him to repeat the directions back to you. If he can’t, it’s too long or complicated. Stay simple!


800-CHILDREN Parent Helpline Director


Fathers – Respect Your Child’s Mother

fatherhood 1Positive Parenting Tip of the Day:  

Fathers offer children a different, but equally important, experience in which to grow and develop.  One of the best things a father can do for his children is to respect their mother. If you are married, keep your marriage strong and vital. If you are not married, it is still important to respect and support the mother of your children. A father and mother who respect each other and let their children know it provide a secure environment for them. When children see their parents respecting each other, they are more likely to feel that they are also accepted and respected.



800-CHILDREN Parent Helpline Director

“Churches are not required to run background checks on youth ministers”

POSTED 9:50 PM, JUNE 5, 2014, BY 

HENRICO, Va. — Churches in Central Virginia are not required to conduct background checks on employees that work with kids, unless they work for a licensed daycare run by the church.  **CLICK HERE to read the full article and view video, or visit www.wtvr.com. **


Only a small # of sex offenders have criminal backgrounds. So while doing criminal background checks is important (and should be required), it’s not the only thing that should be done to prevent child abuse.

Training staff and members at church and religious groups to recognize potential abuse before it happens is as critical as background checks! Perpetrators look for easy access to vulnerable children, and often just knowing that a screening process is in place and that the congregation is educated, protects these innocent children.

“If you don’t teach people how to spot warning signs and if you don’t teach them how offenders infiltrate churches … then they don’t know when they’re hit. They don’t know until they’ve already got a victim.”
~Ashlee W. Roberts (800)CHILDREN Parent Helpline Director

CHILD ABUSE IS PREVENTABLE! If you’d like more information or to request a speaker or materials to distribute, please contact Prevent Child Abuse Virginia at (800)CHILDREN or 800children@pcav.org.  

Odds Of Abuse And Mistreatment Add Up Over Children’s Lives

PCAV offers several programs and services across the state to help combat these terrible statistics discussed in the article below! Click here to learn more about these programs or contact us by calling 800-CHILDREN.


Children who are maltreated are much more likely to have physical and mental health problems later on. They face a higher risk of suicide and of getting in trouble with the law.

That may be because looking at annual numbers alone understates a child’s risk of maltreatment throughout childhood, researchers say. By that measure, 12.5 percent of children have experienced at least one episode of abuse or neglect by age 18, a study published Monday finds.

The numbers are worse for children in minority groups, with 21 percent of African-American children, 14.5 percent of Native Americans and 13 percent of Hispanic children affected.

Just looking at the 1 percent annual number makes it easy for people to think that maltreatment affects just a few children with bad parents, says Christopher Wildeman, an associate professor of sociology at Yale University who led the study.

“When it’s 12.5 percent of parents, this isn’t psychopaths, this isn’t drug addicts,” Wildeman told Shots. “A lot of these folks are in dire straits financially and certainly have their ups and downs, like we all do.”

This study, which was published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, used confirmed cases of maltreatment in a national child abuse database from 2004 to 2011.

The risk was highest in the early years of a child’s life, with 25 percent of first reports of maltreatment coming before a child turned 2. All told, 6 percent of children had been maltreated by the age of 5.

And sadly, parents and other relatives pose the greatest risk. Most victims, 81 percent, were maltreated by a parent, according to the 2011 data. About 6 percent of perpetrators were nonparent relatives; 4 percent were unmarried partners of parents; and just 3 percent were unrelated adults.

Child protective services are good at limiting maltreatment among children who have been neglected or abused, Wildeman says, but not so much at helping avoid that maltreatment in the first place. “If you could address that immediate time when parents are stressed out and broke, and the child is crying,” he says, it could lower the risk of abuse in early childhood.

A variety of preventive efforts, from home nurse visits for first-time parents to training in how to manage children’s behavior, have been tested over the years and shown to reduce a child’s risk of maltreatment. But the programs aren’t widely funded.

PCAA’s Summer Newsletter

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National Children’s Day

June 8, 2014, isNational Children’s Day!

“Americans recognize Mother’s Day, Father’s Day..so why not a national day for children? A day that revives, celebrates and commits to our children and their future.”

Celebrate the children in your families and you community!

Read more…


Fathers Day is right around the corner!
Remember your dad or dads this month and check out these Fathers Day Facts!

Facts for Features: Fathers Day



School is letting out and it’s time for some fun in the sun!

With the time off from school, summer can be a great time to teach kids about health and wellness.

Try letting your child pick one television show to watch each day then fill the remaining time with fun crafts, hobbies, outdoor sports and family activities.

Or dance around the house with the kids to burn calories, build lean muscle and enjoy some quality family time.

Get more great tips from MetroHealth that can keep you and your kids, and kids in the community, leading an active, healthy lifestyle this season!


PCA Kansas

The  2013 Annual Report is out!
Find out what Prevent Child Abuse America accomplished last year, including the expansion of the chapter network, expansion of the Healthy Families America program and what YOUR impact on children and families has been!*photo courtesy of Prevent Child Abuse Kansas 


Help move the Movement! The National Movement for America’s Children is growing and we want you to sign the pledge. To find out more about the Movement you can check out the website, read blog posts or follow the Movement for Children on Twitter and Facebook.

PCAV’s Executive Director Receives National Award

johanna award

Jacksonville, FL – PCAV’s Executive Director, Johanna Schuchert receives the 2014 State Level Administrator Healthy Families America’s Service Excellence Award.

It is with great pride that we announce (Prevent Child Abuse Virginia / Healthy Families Virginia), announce that our very own Johanna Schuchert, PCAV’s Executive Director was selected as the recipient of the 2014 State Level Administrator Healthy Families America’s Service Excellence Award.

Healthy Families America (HFA) reported that competition in this category was very intense yet Johanna “rose to the top of the [selection] process.”  Johanna, who has served as PCAV’s Executive Director since its inception in 1991, was a primary advocate of bringing Healthy Families to Virginia and has worked tirelessly over the past 20 years to ensure HFV’s vitality and growth.  Three years ago she selflessly assumed the role of HFV’s Executive Director, in addition to her many other duties.

Johanna’s leadership in the Virginia General Assembly has been key to bringing HFV before key state leaders and stakeholders time and time again; most recently her work was instrumental in having state funds restored to HF sites across the Commonwealth for FY 2015-2016.  She is a tireless advocate, knowledgeable speaker, polished and experienced leader/executive, and a well-respected and well-connected leader in the field of prevention both nationally and throughout the state of Virginia.  Last year she received VOICES of Virginia’s Children award in recognition of her decades of service to Virginia’s children.

The awards ceremony was held on Sunday evening (May 18th) during the opening reception at Prevent Child Abuse America’s 2014 National Conference for America’s Children; being held in Jacksonville, FL this week.  As part of her award, HFA covered a portion of her conference registration and lodging.

Congratulations Johanna! It is an honor to have you represent our state.

Press Release: Show Kids You Care – WEAR BLUE ON WEDNESDAY!

Press Release WBD ImagePress Release WBD

ABC 8News Highlights Child Abuse Prevention Month

ABC 8NEWS – WRIC | Richmond, Virginia News

Be A Nurturing Parent

strong familiesStrong families are one of the most effective preventative measures against child abuse. Children need to know that they are special, loved and capable of following their dreams. Spend time every day nurturing your children and engaging them in everyday activities — from grocery shopping to nature walks. Expanding your knowledge of parenting and child development is also a valuable pursuit. Your child’s pediatrician is a valuable resource for discussing parenting questions, as are family members, friends, your child’s teachers, and PCAV’s 800-CHILDREN Parent Helpline. But it’s not just about meeting your child’s needs: research shows that parents who take time to care for themselves — both physically and emotionally — have better resilience during times of stress, therefore decreasing the likelihood of abuse. The establishment of  trusted social connections and a support network are also critical components. Isolation is often a contributing factor to child abuse.  Lack of a support system and the feelings of being stressed and alone can intensify problems.  Protecting children and supporting strong families is everyone’s responsibility! Knowing who to call for support when you need it is an effective preventative measure. Prevent Child Abuse Virginia has a multitude of services & programs available to parents and caregivers  :

  • 800-CHILDREN Parent Helpline – Trained call specialists give guidance on issues ranging from how to understand each stage of a child’s development to how to reduce parental stress, strengthen the parent-child bond, access helpful community resources and contact authorities if abuse is suspected.
  • Circle of Parents – provides a friendly, supportive environment led by parents and other caregivers. It’s a place where anyone in a parenting role can openly discuss the successes and challenges of raising children. Where they can find and share support.
  • Healthy Families – Connects new parents around the state with a variety of services, including – for the most overburdened families – a free-of-charge home visitor who supports the family before the child is born until the child enters school. The program has been proven to reduce child abuse and neglect and increase children’s access to routine health care and immunizations.

Join in the fight against child abuse and help promote healthy families by sharing this important message with your friends, family and fellow community members.



It Only Takes A Minute

1 minuteApril is National Child Abuse Prevention Month; a time to celebrate the good things our communities do to promote healthy child development, as well as a time to reflect on the work that still remains.

It only takes a minute…

To make a difference in a child’s life;

To believe in a child;

To listen to a child;

To hug a child;

To realize words hurt;

To talk to a child, and not yell;

To stop a child from being hurt;


Unfortunately, thousands of Virginia children suffer abuse every year.  In FY 2013, there were 51,346 children reported as possible victims of abuse and/or neglect. The Virginia Department of Social Services found that 6,205 children were maltreated, and of those, 29 children died as a result of abuse and/or neglect. The statistics can be overwhelming, but they are reminders that no one can afford to look the other way.  It’s well worth our time as parents, grandparents and members of the community to “take a minute” to make a difference in a child’s life.  Every minute invested in a child’s life is time well spent. Nurturing, protecting, praising, listening. Showing you care with a hug or smile. Taking a moment to say “I love you.” Small things can make a big difference in the life of a child.

I hope everyone reading this will “take a minute” and think about what you can do to make the children in your life feel more loved and valued.  Then, take another minute to show those same children just how important they are to you.

I can’t think of a more gratifying way to spend a minute. Can you?



800-CHILDREN Parent Helpline Director



Governor McAuliffe proclaims April as Child Abuse Prevention Month in Virginia

Governor Terrance McAuliffe proclaims April as Child Abuse Prevention Month in Virginia!  We are very grateful for his support!

2014 Proclamation



Volunteers Needed

IMPORTANT UPDATE!  It looks like the weather is finally going 2 cooperate for us to get Virginia’s Signature Pinwheel Garden planted @LewisGinter Botanical Garden! So, that means WE NEED VOLUNTEERS TOMORROW, APRIL 1st FROM 9-1 AND WEDNESDAY FROM 9-1. If you’re able to come out and join us for even an hour or 2 PLEASE CONTACT ALLISON at aperry@PCAV.org or 804-359-6166 x:308 .

March 2014 Newsletter

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