JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Community members helped to plant a Pinwheel Garden on Wednesday.
The month of April is Child Abuse Prevention Month. Its purpose is to recognize the importance of families and communities working together to prevent child neglect and abuse, physical and emotional.
“Onslow County has a very high rate of child maltreatment and a lot of that is because we have a lot of children in Onslow County,” Heidi Baur, director of the Department of Social Services, said. “We have a very young population. It’s important to raise awareness so people understand what they can do to help.”
It was 2008 when the pinwheel was introduced as the national symbol for childhood abuse prevention. The pinwheels symbolize the nurturing, safe childhood that each child deserves.
Nearly 40 pinwheels were planted along Chaney Avenue.
Onslow County offers childcare services through its PEERS program to reduce parents’ stress that may lead to neglect.
“A lot of families here are military families,” Baur said. “They live a long way from grandma and aunts and uncles and they don’t get the break that sometimes moms need. One morning a week they can bring their kids here and we do free childcare for them.”