April 'Get Your Blue On' Campaign

The goal of The "Get Your Blue On" campaign is to create awareness around the critical issue of child abuse and neglect and to educate on how to prevent it from occurring.

When a child has been abused or neglect, there is a lasting impact on the life of that child. Abuse and neglect are associated with short- and long-term consequences that may include developmental delays, learning disorders, problems forming relationships, aggressive behavior, and depression.

Furthermore, survivors of child abuse and neglect may be at greater risk for problems later in life—such as low academic achievement, drug use, teen pregnancy, and criminal behavior. These affect not only impact the life of the survivor, but also the life of those who surround them.

Despite knowing these consequences, child abuse and neglect are tough topics for people to talk about. We see stories in the news about children suffering unspeakable harm ant the hands of their abusers. And we often want to turn our heads, because we are not sure what we can do to help. And that is why Child Abuse Prevention month is such a critical month to drive awareness about the issue and to let people know that there are ways that they can help.

The Kempe Foundation is collaborating with businesses, government leaders and Colorado citizens to spread the message during the month of April. We are hoping that again in 2009, through this aggressive awareness campaign, we will effectively complement the efforts of all our partners.

We plan to once again saturate the market with a multi-media public service campaign on this important message and engage the community to show support for child abuse prevention. The end of the month will culminate with the annual Kempe Foundation Benefit Event entitled STAND UP! With Josh Blue and Kathleen Madigan - scheduled for Saturday, April 25, 2009 at The Temple Buell Theatre at The Denver Center of Performing Arts.

Story of the Blue Ribbon

The Blue Ribbon Child Abuse Prevention Campaign had its early beginnings following the death of a very young child. In spring 1989, Bonnie Finney, a Virginia grandmother, received the devastating news that her beloved grandson had died of injuries inflicted by his parents.

In an expression of her grief and outrage, this grandmother did something that has given us a symbol, around which we rally for the cause of child abuse prevention. She tied a blue ribbon to the antenna of her van as a way to remember “the bruised and battered body of her grandson” and to alert her community to the tragedy of child abuse.

In Bonnie’s own words: “The blue ribbon serves as a constant reminder to fight for protection of our children. Please wear a blue ribbon. Put one on your car. Give one to your friends. Tell them what it means. You may save a child’s life!”

The act of one grandmother thousands of miles away leads us to this day. Just think what could happen if each one of us helped spread the word to a few of the people we come in contact with each day.

About Kempe

Kempe supports the prevention, treatment and research of child abuse.

In 1962, Dr. C. Henry Kempe published "The Battered Child Syndrome" in the Journal of the American Medical Association. This article exposed that significant numbers of parents and caretakers battered their children, even to death. “The Battered Child Syndrome” established a pattern of medical symptoms and created a medical and psychiatric model to diagnose child abuse.

Today, right here in Denver, Colorado, The Kempe Center creates programs to treat abused children, trains professionals and researches new methods to heal these innocent victims. Kempe currently hosts ten innovative programs directed by some of the nation’s leading child abuse experts: `

  • Kempe Child Protection Team
  • Kempe Postpartum Depression Intervention Program
  • Kempe Fostering Healthy Futures
  • Kempe Infants in Foster and Kinship Care Program
  • Kempe Perpetration Prevention Program
  • Kempe Policy Program
  • Denver – Kempe Trauma Collaborative
  • Kempe Therapeutic Preschool
  • Kempe Training, Education and Consultation
  • Kempe Under Sixes Program

    Dr. Kempe also realized that practitioners and professionals needed support from individuals, businesses, foundations and community agencies to make a difference for abused children. The Kempe Foundation, an independent 501(c) (3) non-profit organization, was founded in 1976 to help raise funds and awareness, and engage in advocacy to create support for The Kempe Center.

    Last year:

  • The Kempe Center’s ten programs provided direct services for 609 children and trained, educated, or consulted with 4,789 professionals in 35 Colorado counties and 19 states. In addition, at least 200 adults were served by Kempe in with significant counseling or meaningful interaction.
  • 140,000 visitors were educated at www.kempe.org.
  • 13,000 blue ribbon car magnets were distributed around the state.
  • The Kempe Infants in Foster and Kinship Care Program identified and provided services to 97% of all infants under the age of six months who entered court-ordered out-of-home placement in the City and County of Denver.
  • Nearly 90% of the children in Kempe's Therapeutic Preschool graduated into mainstream school settings.
  • The Kempe Child Protection Team provided evaluation, diagnosis and treatment for over 350 children (or about one child every day).

    Accomplishments like this are only possible through the support and dedication of our donors and volunteers. We urge you to get involved and visit www.kempe.org for more information.

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