The number of child abuse cases in Marshall County has been decreasing in recent years, but 215 cases in 2011 is still too many, according to local officials.
As Child Abuse Prevention Month comes to a close, dozens of people gathered for the annual Stand Up For Children event on the Marshall County Courthouse lawn Friday. The event, which is organized by Child Abuse Prevention Services, was held both to recognize prevention efforts and to remember victims of child abuse.
"We are here because we care about our children," said Jana Enfield, director of CAPS. "...Our children have no voice. Our children need us to speak on their behalf."
T-R PHOTO BY ANDREW POTTER
Marshalltown Police Department Capt. Mike Hanken talks to the crowd at the Stand Up For Children event Friday on the Marshall County Courthouse lawn. The event is part of Child Abuse Prevention Month.
Several community members spoke on things they do to stand up for children and then the group gathered in a circle and were handed pinwheels.
"They represent childhood and being carefree and what we hope childhood is for kids, but unfortunately sometimes it isn't," said Laurie Gowdy of CAPS.
The gathering has been held in recent years and replaces the March for Children that CAPS formally hosted, which was a parade through town.
"We just want to have a public forum for people to think about preventing child abuse and the victims of child abuse," Gowdy said.