“If We Save One Life, It is All Worth It”
The Kohl’s Caring for Our Kids campaign is aimed at preventing child abuse and neglect and promoting positive parenting skills. Today, hear from Roberta A. Hibbard, M.D., about how this program greatly supports her work in child abuse pediatrics at Riley Hospital for Children.
Q: How long have you been working in the field of Child Protection, and what makes you passionate about your work?
A: I have been working in this area since my fellowship – over 30 years ago. I strive to do well by the children we serve and to encourage all to be armed with the solid information to make the best decisions possible with children and families.
Q: What makes Riley’s program uniquely significant?
A: Our program is staffed by four board certified child abuse pediatricians and serves the entire state. We are uniquely engaged in ongoing partnerships to advance the medical role in child protection through networking with local community medical providers, providing statewide multidisciplinary educational efforts, and offering consultation for medical, child protection and law enforcement officials on cases of suspected child maltreatment.
Q: How has the Kohl’s Caring for our Kids program helped you and the Riley Child Protection program spread awareness to Indiana families?
A: Through direct support of the program, the public service announcements and the television appearances we have been able to reach professionals and families with messages promoting positive parenting practices and encouraging identification, reporting and preventing child maltreatment. I once had a stranger approach me in a public venue saying he recognized me from the public service announcements and thought our messages were important and helpful. Pretty cool.
Q: What are your top five messages that you would like the public to know about child protection?
If you suspect a child is being maltreated, call the child abuse hotline – 800-800-5556. Your call may save a life. Don’t wait until it is too late.
Child abuse can happen to any child of any age in any family and in any community.
Babies sleep safest alone on their backs in their own cribs in the parent’s room. Learn about and follow safe sleep practices to reduce the risk of sudden infant death.
Be sure your child care provider is good with children and WANTS to take of them – don’t just leave them with a “convenient” provider.
Know who your child is with and who the adults are that will be supervising the children – check parent to parent to be sure all is above board.
Q: What’s your greatest hope for what the television commercials can accomplish?
A: Improving awareness of child maltreatment - identification and reporting. If we save one life it is all worth it.
Q: What is your message to Kohl’s about their support?
A: The support from Kohl’s has been invaluable in helping us reach out to the community with positive parenting tips and prevention strategies. It has added to our ability to provide mental health services, safe sleep messages and consultation across the state.
Q: What would you like to say to people in the community who support Riley by purchasing Kohl’s Caring for our Kids plush toys and books?
A: Thank you for support. It is really important to the children and families we serve. We hope you will enjoy new items in the future – and continue your support of these efforts.
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