Childrens Rights Foundation

Childrens Rights Foundation


Saturday mornings, I hated them we hated them. I often wished that school were in session 7 days a week, 365 days a year. The other children thought we were crazy, but for us, school was a vacation from the prison of our so called home. Mom would screen, "Get your worthless bodies down here so that your dad can give you the beating you deserve, and if any of you cry you'll get double the beating." Soon the house was filled with wails of pain. - Caroline

The Children's Rights Foundation, established in 1990, began serving the most helpless victims of family violence in hopes of ending this vicious cycle in our corner of the world. The foundation was started by a group of dynamic leaders with the passion and drive to stop child abuse. They were a group of visionaries that identified problem areas and then assisted with the development, implementation and follow through of solutions. The foundation is a community grass roots child abuse prevention and intervention organization. It was found during the development of the organization that a familiar unfortunate pattern of stories from survivors of child abuse surfaced. The stories related that survivors of child abuse often times felt re-victimized by social service providers due to lack of personal involvement, neglect, gaps in services, or legal limbo. The philosophy of the Children's Rights Foundation became personal involvement, personal advocacy, and personal commitment to each and every child and their family. The philosophy of the foundation also entails that part of the process of healing our children and strengthening our future is for the community to adopt a zero tolerance approach to child abuse.

In addition to the many community service projects provided to our local community, we wanted to highlight one of our most salient programs. The educational component of The Children's Rights Foundation introduces the public to our efforts and brings our foundation into the lives that need us. By educating the public through core services, innovative techniques, and targeted outreach, we have captured the media's attention to help end child abuse in our community. The Children's Rights Foundation provided interviews on the nationally syndicated Montel Williams Show, FOX News Network and Orlando's own local WB 18, in addition to seven (7) radio stations in 5 major cities. During the interviews, we had the ability to provide the warning signs of child abuse and offered assistance to individuals on reporting incidents of abuse to the statewide registry. Because we rely strictly on the wonderfully tireless efforts of our 100 plus dedicated volunteers and board of directors it is with fierce pride that we report our 2000 statistics. The Children's Rights Foundation was able to provide services to more than 15,000 children and their families, distribute more than 10,000 printed brochures and related materials, and presented our "S.T.A.Y." child abuse prevention program in middle and high schools. It was discovered through tracking and documentation that The Children's Rights Foundation received more than 5,000 visits to our newly established website and received more than 75 calls per week to our national 800 hotline in the year 2000. Through our unique collaboration with major industries, we not only diffused children's immediate crisis, but located information and referrals to youths and their families around the country. It is the harsh stance of this program, and in the words of Phil Quinn, that too often children are recognized for what they are not, rather than for what they are; for what they do wrong, rather than what they do right. In initial assessment, we have witnessed parents that have indicated through verbal and non-verbal language that they wish their children came "complete" at birth. We instruct them that children come as God intended, as children, nothing more nothing less. It is up to parents to care for, nurture, protect, teach and discipline, so that their children grow into strong, healthy and confident adults. The main goal of our educational component is to teach the public, parents and children that punishment is done to a child - discipline is done with a child. We have received more than 1,000 letters of appreciation from civic, professional and volunteer organizations and from children themselves for helping them to regain personal loss at the hands of someone that claimed to love them.

Most recognize that child abuse prevention is an intricate and complex calling. It is hard, at times, to balance the horrible injustices done to children without becoming so angry that we, the professionals, become ineffective to social change. The Children's Rights Foundation has dedicated heart, mind and soul into demanding the rights of children. Justice comes to the organization by helping children like Caroline, every day - one day at a time.


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