Iowans who’ve dedicated their careers to keeping children safe from abuse will be meeting today at their 30th annual convention in West Des Moines. Amber Russell is spokeswoman for the group Prevent Child Abuse Iowa, which will offer a series of workshops and speakers.
The opening keynote speaker is Jim Hmurovich, the president and CEO of the group’s national chapter, Prevent Child Abuse America, and he’ll offer a perspective on child abuse prevention efforts nationwide. Russell says Iowa’s child abuse numbers have fluctuated in recent years.
The 2009 numbers dropped off from previous years, “but then with the last few years of the recession and some of the economic stresses families have been facing, they have gone up,” Russell says. From year to year, there has been no trend they can identify, at least recently. The most recent report, for 2010, found 14,000 reports of child abuse in Iowa during the year.
This year’s conference theme is: “Building Foundations For The Future.” Russell says they believe investing in children early will provide the best outcome for Iowa in the decades ahead.
The conference runs today only at the Sheraton-West Des Moines. Learn more about Prevent Child Abuse Iowa online at “www.pcaiowa.org”.
By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City