Phoenix, AZ (April 21, 2021)
Parenting isn’t meant to be an isolated endeavor.
It takes an entire community to ensure that children grow up safe, strong, and well cared for. Whether a person relies on relatives, neighbors, or caretakers for help; raising a child requires an all-hands-on-deck approach, which is why it is important for parents to stay connected to those around them.
Since April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, the Arizona Department of Child Safety would like to remind the public that the best way to prevent child abuse is by strengthening families.
With that in mind, DCS offers the following child abuse prevention tips for parents:
Stay in Touch with Other Parents
When a parent stays mindful amid stressful circumstances, they teach their children to do the same. It is important for parents to stay calm in order to show their children how to react. Parents should reach out to other parents and talk about ways they lead by example. Practicing mindfulness can create a calming environment for everyone when problems arise. A socially and emotionally sound parent leads to a socially and emotionally sound child.
Get Connected to Your Community
The journey through parenthood should not be lonely. Local communities support parents by ensuring access to everything they require to raise a healthy family. Making connections with neighbors and statewide agencies will help them find the support they need. Many of these resources can be found in their own backyard, and 2-1-1 Arizona can help locate them.
Find Encouragement from Others
There are services, resources and people focused on providing hope and helping parents weather a crisis. It can be hard to know what mental health options exist. The Crisis Response Network is available 24/7/365 as a connection point between parents and the services they need.
Lean on Your Support System
Facing difficult conversations and hardships with children is a normal part of parenting that everyone goes through. Connecting with those around you for guidance and direction can help you become the best parent you can be for your children. If you’re in need of assistance, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in crisis. You can call anytime at 1-800-273-8255.
Discuss Safety with Your Loved Ones - Practice Safe Sleep
Before you say goodnight to your baby, take a moment to acknowledge the ABCs of safe sleep. Babies sleep safest when they are Alone, on their Back, and in a Crib. Don’t wake up to a tragedy; talk to your loved ones, caregivers, and other parents about safe sleep best practices.
Reach Out to Experts
In order to teach children by example as they develop, parents need information and resources to be successful. Experts are here to support you and provide sound information on the norms of childhood development.
For more information, visit www.azdcs.gov/support.
If you are interested in helping stop child abuse, we encourage you to join a Regional Child Abuse Prevention Council in your area. Please visit https://dcs.az.gov/services/prevention/prevention-councils for more information. You can choose a county from the drop-down menu and click search to view councils available in your area.