Children’s Home Society of NC Recognizes Child Abuse Prevention Month

March 27, 2024 – Greensboro, NC – Each April Children’s Home Society of NC (CHS) recognizes National Child Abuse Prevention Month to reinforce the importance of families and communities working together to prevent child abuse and neglect.

This is a time to connect families, communities, prevention advocates, and supporters to focus on the creation of an ecosystem of primary prevention in the U.S. and emphasize the importance of building a narrative of hope for the future of children and families. The theme of this year’s effort is “Building A Hopeful Future, Together.”

The most recently reported annual number of investigated cases of abuse and neglect in North Carolina is 117,000. Research shows that protective factors are present in healthy families. Protective factors are conditions or attributes of individuals, families, communities, or the larger society that mitigate risk and promote healthy development and wellbeing.

Promoting the following protective factors is one of the most effective ways to reduce the risk of child abuse and neglect and promote child wellbeing:

  • Nurturing and attachment
  • Knowledge of parenting and of child and youth development
  • Parental resilience
  • Social connections
  • Concrete supports for parents
  • Social and emotional competence of children

“Positive experiences matter when it comes to the healthy development of our children,” said Rebecca Starnes, CHS Chief Program Officer. “Healthy relationships and safe environments allow children to reach their full potential and become thriving members of our communities.”

CHS offers a range of early childhood development support programs to parents for children prenatal through age 5, providing information, support, and resource referrals, as well as therapeutic services to build a foundation for healthy emotional and child development success. CHS has recently launched and is expanding the new Child First program that identifies children at the earliest possible time to both prevent and decrease emotional and behavioral problems, developmental and learning issues, and abuse and neglect. Child First provides in-home supports to families of young children to help promote healthy attachment and strong parenting skills.  This program, new to CHS, is being launched in Mecklenburg, Forsyth, and Durham counties.

“The hopeful news is that families who may be facing difficulties also have support. Parents can learn about their children’s needs and learn new, better ways to react. Parents can change their behavior, and even if they’ve had problems or challenges in the past, the majority can provide a safe, loving, and permanent home for their child,” Starnes added.

CHS has been investing in supporting healthy families through programs connecting with parents and caregivers to provide parenting education, connections to needed community resources, and other supportive services.

CHS’s Intensive Family Preservation Services (IFPS) are designed to strengthen families who are experiencing difficult circumstances and allow children to remain in their homes. These services focus on the family’s specific needs, the safety of the child, and special skills development. One year after their cases closed, 95 percent of IFPS families remained together.

Two additional CHS prevention programs are aimed at supporting the growth and development of children during the prenatal and postnatal period through partnerships with OBGYNS and pediatric providers. Community Navigation partners with OBGYN offices to provide parents with information and support services to help families thrive during the pre and postnatal experience. HealthySteps specialists are integrated at pediatric offices to provide family-centered parenting support during well-child visits.

Children’s Home Society is dedicated to providing top-quality, evidence-based programs and services to children and families throughout North Carolina.  Our education and child welfare staff provided services to more than 22,000 individuals last year, educating and preserving families, supporting children and families through transitions, and creating new families.

For more information on Children’s Home Society and our mission to ensure a permanent, safe, and loving family for every child, and to learn more about becoming a foster or adoptive parent, volunteering, or providing financial support, please call 1-800-632-1400 or visit


About Children’s Home Society of North Carolina

Children’s Home Society offers a network of services and support throughout North Carolina to help establish and sustain healthy, loving relationships in every family. For 120 years, Children’s Home Society has provided a broad spectrum of programs and services including adoption, foster care, parenting education, family preservation, and youth responsibility. Children’s Home Society believes in the importance of family, not only in the life of a child, but also in the foundation of a community.

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