Pancakes to kick off Child Abuse Awareness Month

Published 2:13 pm Friday, March 30, 2018


April is here, which means Child Abuse Awareness Month has finally arrived, sporting its representative blue ribbon and pinwheels.

To raise awareness and help better protect the children of Chilton County, Butterfly Bridge Children’s Advocacy Center is hosting a kickoff event and several challenges throughout the next four weeks to recognize Child Abuse Awareness Month.

“April is a very, very important month for those of us who serve children,” Director Jana Zuelzke of Butterfly Bridge said.

Kicking off the campaign is the center’s Pancakes and Pinwheels event, set for April 4 from 8 to 9 a.m.

The community is invited for a morning of “food and fellowship” at Butterfly Bridge, Zuelzke said.

“District Judge Christ Speaks is going to have some short remarks, challenging the community to do everything they can to protect the children of Chilton County,” Zuelzke said.

Afterward, Speaks and Probate Judge Bobby Martin will sign a proclamation officially recognizing April as Child Abuse Awareness Month in Chilton County.

Weather permitting, the proclamation will be signed at Corner Park, which will “go blue” for the month and is located across the street from the Butterfly Bridge office.

“We hope that this event will kick off a month of conscious awareness when it comes to child abuse in our community,” Campaign Coordinator Brittani Ellison said. “I hope those who attend will continue to participate throughout April and share the Butterfly Bridge message with their co-workers, friends and family.”

Zuelzke said the Department of Human Resources provided Butterfly Bridge with astonishing data regarding Chilton County abuse cases in 2017.

“Last year in Chilton County, they assessed 401 reports of abuse … and that actually involved 614 children — and so I was just floored by that,” Zuelzke said. “And Butterfly Bridge was asked to intervene in 133 of those cases involving those children.”

“Butterfly Bridge assists in cases when there are allegations or suspicions of sexual abuse or severe physical abuse, or if the child has witnessed a crime,” Zuelzke said.

In an effort to combat potential 2018 cases, Butterfly Bridge has organized several challenges throughout April to keep Chilton County residents on their toes in protecting the community’s children.

These events include:

  • Blue Friday: Every Friday in April, wear blue and post to social media using #BBCACBlueFriday.
  • Restaurant Give-back: Support local restaurants as they donate a portion of their sales to Butterfly Bridge.
  • Blue Sunday is April 29: Churches are encouraged to participate in the national day of prayer for abused children and their rescuers. Butterfly Bridge can provide resources to interested congregations.

“One of the main things we focus on during the month is reporting abuse,” Zuelzke said. “So, if you see something or have knowledge of something happening to a child, say something. If we all think someone else is going to report it, then we are not really helping to prevent abuse.”

Butterfly Bridge Advocacy Center is located at 603 Second Ave. N. in downtown Clanton.

For more information, visit or call (205) 755-4205.