Voices for Children 

Child Abuse Prevention Council of Olmsted County
2024 Child Abuse Prevention Month Presentations

Since 1983, April has been nationally recognized, as Child Abuse Prevention Month, a time to recognize the important role that communities play in protecting children and strengthening families.

Each year, Voices for Children– Child Abuse Prevention Council of Olmsted County joins this movement, promoting Child Abuse Prevention Month and raising awareness that child abuse is preventable.

Voices for Children is a multidisciplinary committee whose goal is to spread awareness and education about child abuse prevention in our community. Members include:

                             Family Service Rochester
                             Families First of Minnesota
                             Home Federal Bank
                             Mayo Clinic
                             Olmsted County Public Health
                             Olmsted Medical Center
                             Zumbro Valley Health Center

Prevention is the best defense against child abuse and neglect. There are many ways to build and enhance strong relationships with people in your community. It is important to connect with children and families in your life to offer your support. 

Voices for Children is committed to providing learning opportunities for professionals and other community members.

By ensuring parents and caregivers have the knowledge, skills, and resources they need to care for children, we can help promote the social and emotional well-being of children and youth and prevent child maltreatment within families and communities.

Throughout the year, Voices for Children encourages all individuals and organizations to play a role in making the community a better place for children and families.

2024 Child Abuse Prevention Month Presentations

 APRIL 1, 2024 || Victim Services and Consent with Sarah Palmer

Participants will develop a basic understanding of Human Trafficking, Sexual Exploitation, and vulnerabilities. Participants will learn about safety planning with youth and resources available to support youth. This presentation is confidential and available to any parent/guardian or caregiver.

View presentation HERE.

APRIL 8, 2024 || Building Safety with “40 Developmental Assets ” Framework with Monica Way, LICSW + Matt McKay, LICSW

The Developmental Assets framework developed by the Search institute points to 40 protective factors that are key to healthy development and youth wellbeing. This conversation will talk through these internal and external assets and how to promote these within families and youth to build safety.

No recording available.

APRIL 15, 2024 || Neglect and Psychological Maltreatment with Dr. Katie Johnson

What do vaccine refusal, severe childhood obesity, Harry Potter, and Cinderella have in common? They will all be used in this presentation to build a framework for understanding child neglect, psychological maltreatment, and child torture. Join us for an interactive session that will leave you feeling more equipped to understand these often-overlooked forms of child maltreatment.

View Presentation HERE.

APRIL 22, 2024 || Whole Brain Child with Melissa Quam, MA, LMFT
The training will review The Whole Brain Child by Daniel J. Siegel, MD and Tina Payne Bryson, PhD.The goal is to discuss the approach of child rearing using the 12 strategies that foster healthy brain development, leading to calmer, happier children as well as a stronger relationship between caregiver and child.

View presentation HERE.

APRIL 29, 2024 || Teaming Up to Prevent Bullying with Angie Ellsworth, MS, LSW, LSC, + Anna Schmidt, MS

This presentation will educate caregivers and professionals on identifying signs of bullying and supporting children experiencing or witnessing it. Attendees will leave equipped with a range of resources applicable to a variety of situations aiding them in developing a proactive approach to addressing bullying effectively.

View presentation HERE.

Certificates of Attendance and CEUs are available for nurses and social workers.

Help is available

If you suspect that a child is being abused or neglected and is in immediate danger, call 911.

If the child is not in immediate danger, please call Olmsted County Child Protection Intake at
507-328-6130, or if after normal business hours, call 507-535-5625.

Additional Olmsted County Crisis Numbers

Crisis Nursery:
(507) 287-2020

Southeast Regional Crisis Center (SERCC):
(507) 322-3019

Child Protection:
(507) 328-6130

After Hours Social Services:
(507) 535-5625

Crisis Response for Southeast MN:
(844) 274-7472



NEW! A Public Viewing Room will be available on the 2nd Floor of the Rochester Public Library for all sessions.

Download 2024 Child Abuse Presentations Flyer

History of the Blue Ribbon Campaign  

The Blue Ribbon Child Abuse Prevention Campaign had its early beginnings following the death of a very young child. In spring 1989, Bonnie Finney, a Virginia grandmother, received the devastating news that her beloved grandson had died of injuries inflicted by his parents. 

In an expression of her grief and outrage, this grandmother did something that has given us a symbol, around which we rally for the cause of child abuse prevention. She tied a blue ribbon to the antenna of her van as a way to remember “the bruised and battered body of her grandson” and to alert her community to the tragedy of child abuse.

In Bonnie’s own words: “The blue ribbon serves as a constant reminder to fight for protection of our children. Please wear a blue ribbon. Put one on your car. Give one to your friends. Tell them what it means. You may save a child’s life!” 

Blue Ribbons are on display throughout the community during the month of April.

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