Community outlook: Anita Townsley

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month

Anita Townsley

Every April, Child Abuse Prevention Month is an opportunity to learn about the signs of child abuse and how to prevent it. Communities around the nation come together to support families and children by reinforcing strategies that are working.Outreach programs, resources, and activities offer tools for identifying abuse and neglect. With each opportunity, we bring hope to families and come closer to an end for child abuse and neglect.

Jenny Hulme, Tama County Youth Coordinator through Iowa State Extension, is partnering with SKIP (Supporting Kids in Prevention) and providing our South Tama students/parents with some resources. Students Kindergarten through Fifth grade will be receiving information to be shared with parents. Every kindergarten student will receive a blue pinwheel along with a coloring sheet and information on how to praise a child. First through Fifth grade students will be receiving either a card on How to build your child’s self esteem or Words every child needs to hear.

Classroom guidance lessons in kindergarten and first grade during the month of April will focus on safety. Students will learn more about who a stranger is and how to stay safe by asking for help. Students will learn about who to talk to and to always tell an adult if something doesn’t seem right. Students will learn about good touches and bad touches and that it is important to always tell if something doesn’t seem right. Talking about keeping secrets will also be addressed and that if someone asks you to keep a touching secret you should not keep that secret.

Anita Townsley is the STC Preschool – 1st grade Counselor. Townsley has been in education for 40 years. She was selected the 2020 Iowa Elementary School Counselor of the Year by the Iowa School Counselors Association.