|Clare Lucas and Michelle Sanson place blue pinwheels in the ground near the |
Alan B. Sadler Administration building in downtown Conroe.
More than 1,000 were placed in recognition of Child Abuse Awareness Month.
Montgomery Co. Courier
The Children’s Safe Harbor in Conroe treated a record 1,053 children last year that had been sexually abused, according to Executive Director Dr. Victoria Constance.
To recognize the victims, the harbor joined community stakeholders this week in displaying 1,053 pinwheels on the grounds of the Alan B. Sadler Administrative Building in downtown Conroe.
Montgomery County commissioners granted permission for the ceremony to recognize April as National Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month.
Constance said April 30 was chosen as the day to display the pinwheels to show each one represents the life of a child who walked through the Safe Harbor’s doors in 2014.
“A pinwheel moves with the air, so there’s movement forward,” Constance said. “When you see those, they’re actually children’s lives that we have impacted and I believe we’ve positively impacted these children.”
The Safe Harbor has been in Conroe for 16 years, but never saw this many children in a single year, Constance said.
Surpassing 1,000 new cases of child sexual abuse ranks the Safe Harbor, located in rural-suburban Conroe, along with other urban centers across the nation.
Constance said Montgomery County’s population growth is one of the factors driving up the number of cases.
“There’s a certain number of children that are going to come forward and as population grows, there are more children,” Constance said. ”We are doing a better job of serving these children.”
First Assistant Phil Grant called the Safe Harbor “an incredible resource” for abused and neglected children in the community.
“As terrible as the event is that is represented by these pinwheels, there is victory in the end when we see the perpetrators punished and children made whole again.” he said.
Grant added that Safe Harbor, along with law enforcement and the DA’s Office, are working together to see children emerge as survivors, noting that it is unfortunate the children find their way into the criminal justice system as victims of physical or sexual abuse.
The Safe Harbor wanted to illustrate the two-part process of healing and justice stressed at by the child victims advocacy group.
“(The commissioners) wanted it outside of their building, which I think is a beautiful thing,” Constance said. “It’s there where the public can see for one day how many children’s lives are impacted. Let the healing and justice move forward because their lives are going to continue to touch this entire community.”
|Children's Safe Harbor (I believe), Conroe, Tx|
Safe Harbor should be congratulated for their excellent work, God bless them. But is anything being done to help the other children, or do they simply fall through the very large cracks in government floors?
If governments can't stop the incredible amount of sexual abuse of children, the very least they can do is to take responsibility for the care and treatment of every single victim.