Harold’s House hosts events for National Child Abuse Prevention Month

Next week, on April 11 and 12, they will have their Save Jane event, one in Lufkin and one in Nacogdoches.
Published: Apr. 8, 2023 at 3:37 PM CDT
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NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KTRE) - The month of April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

This month is used to bring awareness to the topic and educate members of the community on prevention tips and ways to get help.

Harold’s House is hosting events this month to bring awareness and prevent child abuse in the Deep East Texas area. Harold’s House covers Angelina, Nacogdoches and Sabine counties.

Ashley Cook, community education director for the non-profit, said this month is important.

“And it’s a month for us to raise awareness to the issue and to talk to our community about what’s happening to our children and get them to join the fight,” Cook said.

In 2022, statewide children advocacy centers saw more than 67,000 children who suffered abuse. According to Cook, Harold’s House saw 834 children. Cook said that is more than one child a day.

“So, this is an issue that is really happening, and we want people to know that it is going on. This is happening to children in our community, and we do need to respond to them,” Cook said.

Cook said some signs that a child is experiencing abuse are changes in the child’s behavior, regression in behaviors, fear of certain places or people, changes in school performance and changes in sleeping or eating habits.

“One of the best safety precautions you can take to limit child sexual abuse opportunities from happening is to limit the number of one-on-one child and adult situations,” Cook said.

Cook said they have events planned throughout the month.

Next week, on April 11 and 12, they will have their ‘Save Jane’ events in Lufkin and Nacogdoches.

Community members will read either Jane or John Doe, referring to children who have received services from Harold’s House, along with their age.

“It’s very compelling to hear people reading all of the names, all at one time. It really makes an impact and raises awareness,” Cook said.

For more information on how to receive help from Harold’s House, visit their website.