Support children this week

Published 8:59 pm Monday, March 31, 2014

The statistics on fatalities from child abuse in Hampton Roads are alarming.

In fiscal year 2013, more than a third of Virginia’s 33 fatalities from child abuse occurred in the Eastern Region, which includes Hampton Roads. Less than a quarter of the state’s children live in the region.

Eighteen more deaths were attributed to an unsafe sleeping environment — putting a baby to sleep on his stomach, for instance, or using improper bedding such as a pillow or stuffed animals, or allowing him to sleep in his car seat.

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Various organizations are advocating ways to help provide more information and resources to families to help prevent the abuse and deaths. They’re looking at ways they can share information, provide better education to parents and other caregivers and provide better training to social workers who come into contact with the families, among other options.

In the fight against child abuse, private organizations as well as government agencies have a voice. Champions for Children, which used to be known as Prevent Child Abuse Hampton Roads, will hold its 32nd annual Celebrity Night from 5 to 9 p.m. this Thursday at Cedar Point Country Club, 80056 Clubhouse Drive.

Mayor Linda T. Johnson is reported to be among the celebrity waiters, along with other political leaders and local celebrities. A portion of proceeds from food and beverage sales will benefit the organization. This is always a fun night that helps one of the most important causes of all — making sure our community’s children get the best possible start in life.

A raffle with several enviable items, including a basket of Royal Chocolate and an iPad, also will be held at the event.

If you’re planning dinner out this week, make Cedar Point your destination on Thursday.

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