Be Informed ... Be Involved ...Make a difference in a child's life today!

The prevention of child abuse and neglect is a community responsibility. It can be a matter of life or death.

Child abuse and neglect happens wherever children are, where they live, sleep, learn or play. In 2015, more than 18,000 reports of suspected abuse were filed in Kern County. Many more cases never get reported. Tragically, during 2015, 2 Kern County children died, 4 nearly died, and 2 suffered severe injuries as a result of child abuse or neglect — all 8 children were under age 2.

Child abuse CAN be prevented! As Kern’s designated Child Abuse Prevention Council, the Kern County Network for Children (KCNC) encourages all community members and organizations to play a role in making Kern County a better place for children and families.

There are simple actions each of us can take every day to help reduce family isolation and stress, which are two of the major risk factors of child abuse and neglect. Such actions include making yourself known to new neighbors and families, supporting community programs and services that work with families, or providing time for parents to have an occasional break from the rigors of parenthood.

By educating yourself—and others—you can also help your community prevent child abuse from happening in the first place. Please accept our invitation to attend the following important community outreach events:

  • April 5 – Kern County Board of Supervisors Proclamation for Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Month.
  • April 8 – National “Wear Blue Day” to show commitment to preventing child abuse, and support strong families and healthy children in Kern County.
  • April 10 – 16 – “Week of the Young Child” activities for children, families and child care providers hosted by Community Connection for Child Care.
  • April 13 – KCNC Mandated Reporter Training hosted by the Kern County Network for Children.
  • April 21 – 2nd Annual Child Abuse Prevention Forum hosted and moderated by the Kern County Network for Children from 8:30am to 10:30am in Bakersfield. Discussion will include representatives from the phone room, Child Protective Services (CPS), Differential Response, the Henrietta Weill Memorial Child Guidance Clinic parent education and time reunification programs, and a former foster youth.
  • April 24 – National Blue Sunday Day of Prayer for child abuse victims and those who rescue them.
  • April 29 – Flag Raising Ceremonies remembering the two (2) Kern County children who died in the last year due to abuse or neglect at 8:30 a.m. in the DHS Front parking lot - Union/California in Bakersfield.

While April is recognized nationally as Child Abuse Prevention Month, every day should be about preventing child abuse and neglect. Read the Kern Cares guide How You Can Get Involved in Child Abuse & Neglect Prevention which outlines everyday ways you can protect children, respond to child abuse, and strengthen Kern County families so that children are raised in a safe, nurturing environment.

Keeping kids safe from harm is up to everyone of us! Be Informed ... Be Involved ...Make a difference in a child's life today!

Want to do more?

Listed below are some ideas on how to get involved in different awareness campaigns from Kern Cares even if you have a few minutes, a few hours or more time!