Voicing Out Children’s Needs, Generation After Generation

Building an Orphanage with the help of Joey Crews
Image Credit: eternalchurch.net

Real stories from the elders fascinate me. I would intently listen to my granny when she recalled the things she used to do in her younger days. She used to share the days when life seemed primitive. I would imagine how fun her days were when they used the creeks and rivers for bathing and laundry. She once had a good long-term memory. It was like I was absorbing the interesting details of a history book.

As days went by, her stories had become shorter. Her memory erased most them. My grandmother has been suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease for 5 years. She could no longer remember things. She had forgotten her own birthday, her exact age, and a lot of times, she has no idea that we are already living in Anniston. The most painful part is that  sometimes, she forgets who I am. It saddens me to know that I am just now a stranger for her. But that didn’t stop me from holding her and asking her to tell me a story about the old days. All she can remember is that she was a teacher.

I think what remained in her memory storage were only the fond memories in an orphanage home. She worked as a teacher and she spent almost half of her life teaching orphans. Those were children who were abandoned, had lost their parents and were relinquished due to poverty.

I became a teacher because of my grandmother’s stories. More than my wish to emulate her, I also wanted to experience the joys of teaching. I worked in a private school and I had spent my weekends volunteering in an orphanage to teach and counsel children. I was happy to have the chance to become a foster parent to two children, keeping them warm and safe in our small home. Until one day I realized I had a calling to take care more children who needed help.

With love and determination, I was able to start a small orphanage which initially catered 5 children. I worked along with friends to build a non-profit. To run a place like this was not easy. Each year, a number of children were left under our care. I saw the possibility of acquiring a larger place for the increasing group. It was good that more people became aware of our cause. Generous individuals and few big companies had helped me in funding for a new place.

Finally, I decided to look for a commercial property for sale in Anniston that was big enough for me to turn into an orphanage/school for the children that are sent to our care. I was glad to have met Joey Crews, the real estate agent who helped us acquire a new and better place for the children. Working with Crews was a great experience because a task that would have taken long to accomplish was achieved just in time for the children to start school. Indeed, no time had gone to waste with his service and every paper work was clean and well taken care of. I was glad there’s always a right person you can count on when life throws you with some tough decisions.

Having a new place for the kids is a dream come true. I have wanted to provide them a place where they can laugh and play, learn in a classroom and sleep comfortably. I have been doing this because I consider these children as my own family. That was one thing my grandmother had taught me – that sometimes, children cannot speak for themselves and they need kindhearted people to speak for them and guide them. I am happy that my grandmother will continue to live through the teachings she passed to me.

Protecting A Child From Abuse

Child Abuse And How To Protect Your Children From It

Prevemting Abuse Of Children
Image Credti: goodmenproject.com

Children are vulnerable to any kind of abuse. Countless children every year are physically or sexually abused. It is not easy to watch the bruises on their faces and think of every single trauma and pain they have gone through.

Lately, the media has been covering this topic on a more regular and detailed basis. Seeing the terrifying cases of child sexual abuse can be troubling to all parents who have small children. Anxiety can sometimes get in the way. We become overprotective to them. We do not want them to grow up in fear, anger and neglect.

Sure, we are the ones who need to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to child sexual abuse. But, sometimes our own ways wrapping them with too much cotton wool cannot give them the skills they need to develop in order to protect themselves. It is our role to help them develop as healthy social human beings allowing them to be in school and not being with them all the time. All we can do is lessen the risks.

Fortunately, there’s a much increased awareness about child abuse. Years ago, no one talked about children’s sexual health and safety. But today, professionals in both social work and the medical fields have been working together to design programs which aim to teach children about healthy relationships and create places where parents, teachers, and children feel they can speak up about abuse.

Teaching Children Skills To Fight Against Abuse
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As parents, we can help ourselves by not letting worries rule our days. We have a choice to be proactive about it. The internet is a good source for programs tackling on child abuse prevention like the NYSPCC’s curriculum called “Safe Touches: A Personal Safety Training for Children”. It facilitates child-friendly workshops to provide information on the difference between safe and unsafe touching, teaching them about boundaries and about discerning types of touch. It teaches children to identify an adult whom they could turn to when they feel unsafe or confused and it teaches them the assertive language skills. Even at a young age of four, they can be taught how to use their voice to prevent abuse. These are valuable to children. The NYSPCC can also serve as a therapy referral source. Its mental health clinicians are specially trained in treatment for child sexual and physical abuse.

Sometimes we need not look farther because your child’s school can be of tremendous help if they have programming on child abuse prevention.

Prevent Child Abuse To Enhancing Social Skills
Image Credit: community.ksde.org

Aside from teaching our kids the skills, it is crucial that we are aware of the ways on how to safeguard them in the best ways possible. It starts with knowing who’s on your child’s life. Participate in your child’s activities and become acquainted with your child’s friends. Reassure yourself that they are always in supervised situations with trustworthy adults. Check the backgrounds and reference of a nanny or caregiver. Make certain your child’s school or day care center will release her only to you or someone you officially designate.

This is simply one small piece of the much larger prevention puzzle. But this is not definitely an insignificant one.

Need Ideas for Children’s Parties?

So when you need to come up for good ideas for a children’s party, where exactly do you go to? I pretty much talk to my brother, who practically works as one of the lawyers for the Personal Injury Attorney Tampa.

I know; how could a lawyer know anything about children’s parties. However, he’s a single parent who supports his only child, so he pretty much has an extensive knowledge about children’s parties despite his profession as a personal injury lawyer.

Believe me, you are not the only one struggling with that particular problem. You can browse in the Internet for hours and still, it’s hard to come up with a party theme that your child will love. For this, you can talk to your kid and ask them what kind of birthday party theme they want. Since kids will be kids, they’ll also have a hard time answering your question. Being the case, check the list below for some good party themes that my brother suggested for my kid’s birthday.

Batman Theme – Our favorite caped crusader from Gotham is also a favorite party theme for kids. You can have someone dress up as Batman and his faithful sidekick Robin as party mascots for the celebration. If that is too expensive for your tastes, you can have the party cake or accessories designed with the Batman logo.

Marvel’s Avengers – Another great kids party theme is Marvel’s favorite superhero group. Have everyone join the party dressed up as their favorite Avengers superhero. If you want something fancy, then hire a bunch of people to dress up as Iron Man, Captain America, or Thor.

My Little Pony – For girls, this seems to be a popular choice for a party theme. You can have the five main ponies as candles or accessories in the cake. Pin the tail on the donkey (or pony, rather) should come up as an easy answer for parlour games.

Spongebob Squarepants – Nickelodeon’s most favorite character and his bunch of fun-loving friends also make excellent party pals for your children’s party. If you’re feeling fancy, you can have Spongebob appear with Mr. Krabbs, Squidworth, and Patrick Starr. But if you’re tight on the budget, you can just have one character appear.

In any case, there are other great party themes out there, but these three seem to be on the top list. If you have great kids party ideas, then it wouldn’t hurt to try them out too!

It All Starts With the Family

Image Credit: jalanalit.com
Image Credit: jalanalit.com

Every decent parent would work hard to ensure that their family is well protected from all sorts of danger. When a member of the family gets hurt, it makes a parent feel less competent as a father or a mother. That is why some parents even go as far as being too overprotective. In some cases this is something positive but sometimes it would also only push a child away from their parents.

There are a lot of dangerous things out there, and parents should be alert about all those things. Constant communication with your child is the key to making certain your children never fall into any harm.

Another tip is by knowing the friends of your children. When you know the people they are constantly with, you can be sure who to contact in worst case scenarios. Plus, knowing your child’s friends will make you understand your child even more because you will see in their friends the type of person they are, the activities they like, the things that make them happy. When you are able to do this too with your child, you will feel much safe because you know you have a tight relationship and the child will feel that he or she can contact you whenever you are needed. Lastly, knowing who they are constantly out with will also help you decides if your child is in good company or not. If they are not, then you can warn them about their choice of friends so that any further damage by unhealthy friends could be cut as soon as possible.

Image Credit: livestrong.com
Image Credit: livestrong.com

While the outside world is a constant battle of good and evil and as parents you have to always be prepared for anything, there are also problems that could occur inside your home. These things are incidents that you must be more wary about because, after all, it is your home.

Top priority of dangers in your own home that you should be alert about is the condition of your house. Why, a dirty and unsafe house will cause a lot of trouble for your children. An unclean home will result to sickly children and sickness is something that is very difficult to combat and is also very financially damaging. An unsafe home can also cause sickness as well as serious injuries to your loved ones.

Image Credit: secureteen.com
Image Credit: secureteen.com

Of course, another priority should be your relationship with your children. Sometimes, it would be good to check how you have been as a parent. You have to see if the way you perceive your parenting tactics is at par with the progress and development of your child. You are the first people that your children interact with, hence, you have to understand your capacity to make or break your children.

This kind of responsibility is real and has a great impact on the life of a child. That is why parents become the center of questioning when abuse is detected on the child. Some parents do not even know that they are already abusing their children. Parenting guides and counselling can be a big help in this kinds of situations.

Why Children Need Voices

Image Credit: constantcontact.com
Image Credit: constantcontact.com

Children are heaven sent. They exhibit innocence that makes ignorance seem such a happy state to be in. They make their families smile, they bring life to a quiet and dull home.

Children are curious little creatures that have so many questions about the world, where they come from, who they want to be when they grow up, why there is day and night, and so much more. The simple things adults tend to neglect, are big and glorious and difficult for them.

It is this vulnerability and this angelic ignorance that makes children weak against abuse from others, especially from adults.

It is a sad fact that some adults do not grow enough to realize how traumatizing it is a to a child when they are abused. It is beyond sad that some adults even have the audacity to do such horrible things to children.

When children fall victim to abuse, their present condition is not the only thing that is affected. Depending on the level and duration of the abuse, it could also impact the child’s psychological and emotional state, possibly damaging and traumatizing the child forever.

Image Credit: sodahead.com
Image Credit: sodahead.com

Abuse on children comes in various forms. Sometimes, adults are not even aware that they are already abusing children. The trauma is more difficult to deal with when the abuser is someone from the child’s family.

GAL, “Guardian Ad Litem”, literally translates to “Guardian of the Case” which could also easily, figuratively imply as being the voice of children, is a volunteer organization that voices out these problems for the children. They have little capacity to express themselves because they are, again, innocent children. This incapacity to voice out their needs and their pain are tripled once they unfortunately become a victim of abuse.

Adults sometimes do not know what to do when faced with legal issues. This fact makes it simpler to understand how children also need so much help and attention especially regarding these matters.

GAL helps out these children by providing them the care and help they need. Volunteers pair up with lawyers that handle legal issues for some kids, while other volunteers focus on easing the pain and helping the children get over their trauma.

GAL aims to provide the voice for these children, constantly campaigning against their abuse and helping those who have already fallen victims to abuse.

Unlike any other organizations, we are not happy when our numbers grow because this just means that more and more children are getting different torments and abuse and this goes against what we campaign for.

No matter how cruel this world gets, we will be here to help those in need. After all, as the cliche goes, the children are our future. If some adults are not strong enough to protect the future of this Earth, then at least we are here to remedy the situation.