Pinwheel planting raises awareness of child abuse

By Anne Marie Amacher
The Catholic Messenger

DAVENPORT — A partnership between St. Ambrose University and the Child Abuse Council to celebrate children and families culminated with the placement of pinwheels near the grotto on the university campus.

Anne Marie Amacher
Dylan Jones and Chrissy Goecke plant a pinwheel near the grotto at St. Ambrose University in Davenport. The pinwheel garden planting recognizes Child Abuse Prevention Month. Dylan is a student at the Children’s Campus, owned by the university.

The pinwheel garden planting was held April 1.

St. Ambrose University President Sister Joan Lescinski, CSJ, welcomed students from the university’s Children’s Campus, their families and director, and from the Child Abuse Council Lindsay Hornbaker, community education program manager.

“April is nationally recognized as Child Abuse Prevention Month,” Sr. Lescinski said. “A time to come together as a community in support of children and families.”

The blue pinwheel is a symbol of the healthy, happy and full childhood that all children deserve, she noted. “Blue is also one of our school colors,” she laughed.

Several organizations in the Quad-City area planned to plant pinwheels that will remain on display throughout April. “We are pleased to be one of those community partners.”

Also on campus, Sr. Lescinski noted, are other pinwheels in brightly decorated sand buckets made by Children’s Campus students.

Hornbaker said she was honored by the community’s commitment to celebrate childhood. The Child Abuse Council works to eliminate child abuse through education and prevention.

In the Quad-City area alone last year, Hornbaker said 3,000 reports of abuse or neglect were received. “The good news is this is 100 percent preventable,” she said. Resources are available to help provide a supportive and loving environment for healthy children.

“Prevention is not a job, but an investment in our community.”

Students from the Children’s Campus were invited to help Sr. Lescinski “plant” pinwheels in a designated area by the grotto.

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