An array of pinwheels on display in Naperville is symbolic of the vision that motivates local child abuse prevention advocates: hope, health and happiness for all children.
In honor of Child Abuse Prevention Month, the pinwheel garden will remain in place through April outside Safety Town at the corner of Aurora Avenue and River Road. It was built this past weekend by members of the Exchange Club of Naperville, Prevent Child Abuse Illinois and the Naperville Junior Woman’s Club Juniorettes to shine a light on the issue and raise awareness for effective solutions.
“In Naperville, we don’t really think this happens … but we are not immune to child abuse,” said Jennifer Samartano, northern region prevention specialist with Prevent Child Abuse Illinois. “If you see something, say something, because you could be the only lifeline to helping that child.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the risk for child abuse and neglect over the last year, she said, pointing to added family stressors, such as job loss, and fewer caregivers — teachers, social workers, coaches — keeping an eye on kids.
Picture Source: Ryan Rayburn