Get Involved in Charity, Make a Difference This April

Every month is a good month for giving, but here’s some ways to make a difference in April 2015.

National Child Abuse Prevention Month

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month

Unfortunately, the United States has one of the worst records for child abuse among industrialized nations. Every year, people make over 3 million reports of child abuse, but that is only what is reported.

Experts estimate that over 6 million children may be affected. And one child may suffer in multiple ways. Abuse can be physical, mental, sexual, or emotional, and children might also be physically or emotionally neglected.

Abuse and neglect have ripple effects for society, because rarely do victims go through their lives without lingering effects. Victims are more likely to be depressed, abuse alcohol or drugs, engage in risky behavior, and perpetuate the cycle of violence.

Statistics show that in fatalities of these children, at least one of the parents were involved 80% of the time.

As we become more aware of abuse and prevention, it becomes obvious that people need to help situations, if they suspect a child’s welfare is at risk. This is a difficult decision for many, but it comes down to the possibility of saving a child, or not. It isn’t only about risks of physical harm, but also risks of emotional abuse or neglect. Every child deserves the right to a happy, fulfilling life.

Child Help features steps that can be taken to help a child. In many scenarios, it is not about preventing abuse itself, but preventing the stresses that cause family members to abuse children. The site talks about “protective factors” which can help families cope, such as social connections, resilience, knowledge about child development, and nurturing and attachment.

Child Help offers tip sheets in both English and Spanish. Child Help also maintains a national hotline, 1-800-A-Child, staffed 24 hours per day, and provides resources in over 170 languages. The hotline offers support, crisis counseling, information, and resources.

Support their work by donating on their website. Child Help is a non-profit founded by two women in 1959, which has won over 100 awards and is recognized for their work to help children.

National Jazz Appreciation Month (JAM)

April is National Jazz Appreciation MonthApril is also National Jazz Appreciation Month (JAM). “One of America’s original art forms,” jazz is derived from African American music of the 1800s and 1900s and is renowned for its improvisation. Jazz originated in different cities, which became known for different types of jazz, such as New Orleans – featuring big brass sounds – and Kansas City – featuring a “blues” style. Several Americans rose to worldwide jazz fame, including Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, and Benny Carter.

One of the first elements of jazz, ragtime music became popular after the abolition of slavery in 1865, when many black musicians were able to work as entertainers. The famous African-American composer Scott Joplin, wrote 44 ragtime compositions, including an opera. His music influenced many jazz legends.

Many slave songs had roots in traditional African spirituals. Singing while performing manual labor was routine, and slave owners sometimes promoted singing and dancing as a diversion from the slaves’ labors. Many of these songs made their way into the “blues” tradition in the Deep South.

By the 1940s, a more mobile society and the invention of radio, introduced jazz into all cities. Offshoots became other popular branches of music, including ”rhythm and blues” (R&B), rock and roll, and even hip-hop. The genre of jazz also continues to grow and change. It has become a popular form of music around the world.

Learn more about JAM and support jazz organizations by visiting Jazz at Lincoln Center.

Please give in any way you can, and help support these important causes for the betterment of our future.

Do you have a charity or national cause you want to draw attention to? Tell us about it! Leave a comment or start a Footprint to raise awareness.

About Cindy Readnower

Cindy Readnower, MBA, specializes in sales, marketing, and entrepreneurship. An award-winning certified Life Coach, business consultant, and publisher at Skinny Leopard Media, she helps writers produce and promote their books. She is a newspaper columnist, author of "Inherited Secrets," and a blogger.

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