COVID-19 is not an ideal season, but we know that God is with us and is walking alongside us in the uncertainty and the stress. And in the midst of this crisis, our mission remains the same.
Thornwell serves to prevent child abuse and neglect, build up and reunite families, and support healthy communities in the name of Jesus Christ.
Every April, we recognize Child Abuse Prevention Month, and in this season, it takes on an even deeper meaning. Stress levels are rising due to school cancellations, work closings, and more, and social distancing measures can further isolate families who were already under strain.
In light of all of this, we are kicking off a blog series to highlight the ways we all can help our families and our communities remain strong, safe, and healthy. Simple things such as managing our stress, finding and maintaining social connections, and seeking support—and encouraging others to do the same—will make a difference.
Here are a few practical ways you can support your kids in this time of social distancing:
For your kids:
- Reassure and guide them. Your kids are looking to you. Let them know you’re there for them, and that you’re doing what you can to keep them safe and healthy. Encourage them to ask questions if they’re worried or scared.
- Routine and structure are your friends. These are strange times for everyone, so don’t put too much pressure on having the perfect routine or even sticking to old ones you may have. Involve your kids in building new routines that fit with your new normal. Structure, even in times like these, will keep kids healthy and make them feel safer. For specific tips, watch a member of our Building Families team discuss structure here and here.
- Maintain a safe environment. Even in the midst of a global pandemic, child abuse is a frightening reality. Talk openly with your children about their boundaries and let them know they can always come to you. If your children are around adults other than you right now, avoid isolated, one-on-one situations by making sure all interactions can be observed or interrupted. Learn more about prevention measures and warning signs here.
In the next blogs in this series, we will share tips on keeping your family strong and supporting families in need at this time. Follow along to see more!
If you have questions or need support during this time, you can contact us here or call 864.938.2100. We’re here for you!