SCHOFIELD BARRACKS, Hawaii - Two proclamations were read and signed by Army leadership at the Kaena Community Center, here, April 7.

Child Abuse Prevention Month, with its theme of "Children are our Future: Let's Keep our Future Safe by Protecting the Child," emphasizes protection and support of keiki.

"We have to continue to demonstrate our commitment to provide our children and their parents with a strong, healthy and supportive environment, where children can be safe and thrive," said Col. Mathew Margotta, commander, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii.

In recognition of the proclamation, the Family Advocacy Program displayed 367 pinwheels, each representing a new referral to the Army's New Parent Support Program, which provides education and prevention services to Soldiers and families for children up to age 5.

With each referral, the Army aims to increase the skill-set and knowledge base of parents, equipping them with tools to overcome daily stressors, bond with their young children, and lay the foundation for healing families.

The second proclamation signed at the event proclaimed April 2010 to be Sexual Assault Month across USAG-HI. The signing is in keeping with the Army's "I A.M. Strong" prevention campaign, and in support of its theme, "Hurts one, Affects all... Preventing Sexual Assault is Every Soldier's Duty."

"I encourage every Soldier and family members to prevent sexual assault by intervening, acting and motivating others in looking out for the welfare of friends, neighbors, and battle buddies," said Margotta.

During Sexual Assault Awareness Month, 200 miniature flags will be displayed throughout garrison communities. Each flag represents reported sexual assault cases involving Soldiers or their adult family members in the Army Hawaii community.

"All Soldiers are encouraged to join together and pledge to prevent sexual assault. When you see someone who looks like they could use assistance, ask them if they need help," Margotta emphasized. "When they ask for help, be sure to step in and assist. If someone doesn't recognize trouble, do something to intervene and prevent the situation from becoming worse."

"We have to educate everyone in the USAG-HI community, inside and outside the gate, to play a role in supporting sexual assault prevention," he added.

Page last updated Thu April 29th, 2010 at 17:11