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Child Abuse & Foster Care Prevention

The goal of Prevention Services is to strengthen families by ensuring the safety, permanency, and well-being of its children. These services are designed to:

  • Prevent the occurrence (or reoccurrence) of child abuse/neglect from any caretaker
  • Prevent out of home care (including the prevention of foster care)
Services are determined by:
  • Target population
  • Degree of trauma experienced by the child and family
  • Level of intervention by LDSS
Benefits of providing prevention services to families in a strength-based, trauma informed system that promotes protective factors include the following:
  • Families who identify their problems and seek help through prevention are more likely to benefit quickly from services and their children are less likely to be at risk of abuse and neglect and out-of-home care
  • Early involvement with the family reduces the likelihood of abuse and neglect occurring, maintains permanency for the child in their family, and preserves sibling groups
  • Strength-based family engagement approaches empower family members and increase their opportunity to be self-sufficient
  • Training and education in the areas of parents' understanding of child development, behavior management, stress management, attachment, and nurturing reduces negative behavior problems and family conflict and improves family relationships


Child Abuse Prevention Month 2021

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month.

Annually the governor designates April as Child Abuse Prevention Month in Virginia. Individuals and organizations in Virginia and across the United States mark the month with public awareness efforts and by distributing blue ribbons for people to wear and display.

Child abuse and neglect is the cause of more than 1,700 deaths each year in the United States. What can you do to save a child from abuse, neglect, and death?

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