Patty Eagar, executive director for Advocates, described the vigil as one more way of drawing attention to child abuse in Bartow County. "We're trying to raise awareness of child abuse prevention and what people can and should be doing to fight child abuse and to help those who are already victims of child abuse."
"We decided we needed to do more than plant pinwheels in the ground," she continued, referencing the pinwheels planted at the NorthSide Bank in Adairsville.
Advocates board member Barry Adcock opened the event with a prayer saying, "Lord, help them [parents] to know and help us to communicate that there are resources out there for them if they are struggling with finances and marital issues and other family problems, and that taking it out on the child is not the answer."
Bartow County Department of Family and Children's Services Director Lynn Green, Bartow County Juvenile Court Judge Velma Tilley and Assistant District Attorney Rosemary Greene spoke to the crowd, and all emphasized the importance of preventing abuse and helping victims.
Judge Tilley in particular described the large number of people that work to protect and take care of the county's children. "It is thanks to the hard work of the folks of the DCFS, at Court Appointed Special Advocates, our foster parents, our folks that end up adopting children and all the volunteers that are on our citizen's review panel, the professionals that come and testify or that provide therapy for our children -- it takes truly a village, and thank you for being part of that village."
Advocates for Children's next major event is a presentation featuring psychologists and sexual abuse experts Julie Medlin and Steve Knauts at the Cartersville-Bartow Chamber of Commerce. The event starts at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday and the pair will discuss their recent book "Avoiding Sexual Dangers: A Parent's Guide to Protecting Your Child."