National Week of the Young Child is April 20-24. The children and staff of the UST Child Development Center will celebrate with a variety of activities throughout the week, including "Kisses" on the Quad. Look for them from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Monday, April 20, on the lower quad where they will give out these special kisses (of the chocolate variety, of course).
In addition, April is Child Abuse Prevention Month when people should find ways to transform the Twin Cities community into a place that actively supports families and children. The majority of child abuse cases stem from situations and conditions that are preventable in an engaged and supportive community.
The UST Child Development Center offers these answers to the question, "What can I do?"
- Be a friend to parents you know. Ask how their children are doing. If a parent seems to be struggling, offer to baby-sit, run errands, lend a friendly ear – show that you understand.
- Be a friend to children you know. Smile when you talk with them, ask them about their day at school and send them a card – show them that you care.
- Talk to neighbors about looking out for one another's children. Encourage a supportive spirit among parents in your neighborhood – show that you are involved.
- Give used clothing, furniture and toys for use by another family. This can help relieve the stress of financial burdens that may increase risk factors for abuse – show that you can help.
- Volunteer your time and money for programs in the community that support children and families – show that you can make a difference.
For further information about child abuse prevention in your community, visit the Prevent Child Abuse Minnesota Web site or call 1 (800) CHILDREN.