April is Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Month

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Rallies on Saturday and Wednesday are designed to support "the most defenseless members of society -- children," according to groups organizing them on behalf of abused and neglected children.

"Rally for the Children of Domestic Violence" begins as 10 a.m. Saturday at St. Gall Pastoral Center in Gardnerville, in recognition of Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention Month.

Sponsored by the Purple Ribbon Coalition, with members from organizations in Douglas County, a presentation will be given on the effects of domestic violence on children. A free continental breakfast and child care are included.

On Wednesday, Court Appointed Special Advocates of Carson City holds its annual Light of Hope gathering at Carson City Hall from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Unlike previous years, there will be no candlelight vigil. The daylight event is aimed at educating people about CASA and its programs, said Frank Davin, a volunteer and member of the CASA board of directors.

CASA is a nonprofit that helps children involved in court cases, many of them involving abuse and neglect. They are assisting 52 children in the surrounding areas, Davin said.

Because of city budget restraints and a lack of tobacco-settlement funding, CASA will rely solely on private donations.

"The money will be used to recruit, train, supervise, and support the children and volunteers," he said.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, nearly 3 million reports of abuse concerning five million children were made in 2000.

In almost two-thirds of the cases, information provided in the report was sufficient to prompt an investigation. As a result, 879,000 children were found to have been victims of abuse or neglect. An average of three children die every day from abuse or neglect.



WHAT: Rally for the Children of Domestic Violence

WHEN: Saturday, 10 a.m.

WHERE: St. Gall Pastoral Center, 1434 Centerville Lane, Gardnerville


WHAT: Light of Hope

WHEN: Wednesday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

WHERE: Carson City Hall, 201 N. Carson Street

FOR INFO: To donate money, volunteer, or ask questions, call 882-6776 or e-mail casaofcc@earthlink.net


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