Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Pinwheels aim at raising local awareness of child welfare issues

SPRING HILL — Advocates for improving the lives of local children are participating in a whimsical way to show kids that the community really does care about them.

You may have noticed gardens, decorated by spinning pinwheels, popping up around Hernando, from Brooksville City Hall to child care centers.

If Noreen St. Jean gets her wish, more will be springing up in the coming weeks.

The Spring Hill community activist and community facilitator for Devereux Kids, a national nonprofit group focused on helping children in need, is promoting the national Pinwheels for Prevention campaign.

St. Jean hopes the toys will attract attention and lead to conversations about how to strengthen families as part of the drive to put kids first.

"Our goal is to educate and nurture families,'' she said. "Parents should realize they are their child's first teacher. We want to support family well-being.''

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, but St. Jean said the group hopes to keep the vibe positive; strong and happy families, she said, will help prevent child abuse.

Participants in the pinwheel garden campaign are encouraged to photograph their gardens and pinwheels, write a pledge promising to be a good role model or supporter of children, and send the photo and pledge to St. Jean at [email protected]

Pinwheels have blossomed at Brooksville City Hall, she noted on Wednesday, and more are expected to sprout at the Hernando County Government Center on Tuesday.

St. Jean will forward these submissions to Accuform, a sign-making business in the Hernando Airport Industrial Park, which will produce a banner bearing replicas of the photos.

The banner, she said, will be displayed around the county all year.

"We're challenging the community to put their kids first," St. Jean said. "Florida is taking part in this national campaign of positive parenting, abuse prevention."

On Friday, teen members of the Boys and Girls Club will show off their garden and pinwheels at the club site, 5404 Applegate Drive.

Also committed to the program are several schools, Greater Hernando Chamber of Commerce, Boys and Girls Club of Hernando County, Brooksville Mayor Frankie Burnett, Hernando Youth Initiative and Kids Central. The Child Advocacy office and State Attorney's office have expressed interest, St. Jean added.

Kids Central hired Devereux Kids to carry out the project.

The Devereux Foundation, founded in 1912 in Pennsylvania, created Devereux Florida in 1987, according to the group's website. Devereux Florida provides behavioral health, intellectual/developmental disabilities, and child welfare services to more than 13,000 children annually.

The organization operates almost 50 programs in 38 Florida counties and is the largest nonprofit provider of these services in the state, the website states.

Beth Gray can be contacted at [email protected]

>>where to call

Learn more

For information about the local effort to support Devereux Kids, contact Noreen St. Jean at (352) 345-5954.

Pinwheels aim at raising local awareness of child welfare issues 04/06/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, April 6, 2011 6:41pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. 'Empire' star Grace Byers keynotes USF Women in Leadership & Philanthropy luncheon

    Human Interest

    BY AMY SCHERZER

    TAMPA — The first University of South Florida graduate to address the USF's Women in Leadership & Philanthropy supporters, Grace Gealey Byers, class of 2006, centered her speech on her first name, turning it into a verb to share life lessons.

    Grace Byers, University of South Florida Class of 2006, stars on the Fox television show Empire. She delivered the keynote at the USF Women in Leadership and Philanthropy luncheon Friday. Photo by Amy Scherzer
  2. Southeast Seminole Heights holds candlelight vigil for victims' families and each other

    News

    TAMPA — They came together in solidarity in Southeast Seminole Heights, to sustain three families in their grief and to confront fear, at a candlelight vigil held Sunday night in the central Tampa neighborhood.

    A peaceful march that began on east New Orleans Avenue was held during the candlelight vigil for the three victims who were killed in the recent shootings in the Seminole Heights neighborhood in Tampa on Sunday, October 22, 2017.
  3. It's not just Puerto Rico: FEMA bogs down in Florida, Texas too

    HOUSTON — Outside Rachel Roberts' house, a skeleton sits on a chair next to the driveway, a skeleton child on its lap, an empty cup in its hand and a sign at its feet that reads "Waiting on FEMA."

    Ernestino Leon sits among the debris removed from his family’s flood-damaged Bonita Springs home on Oct. 11. He has waited five weeks for FEMA to provide $10,000 to repair the home.
  4. McConnell says he's awaiting Trump guidance on health care

    STERLING, Va. — Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Sunday he's willing to bring bipartisan health care legislation to the floor if President Donald Trump makes clear he supports it.

    Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell says he’s “not certain yet” on what Trump wants.
  5. Tampa's Lance McCullers shows killer instinct in pitching Astros to World Series

    Ml

    HOUSTON — It felt like the beginning on Saturday night at Minute Maid Park, the arrival of a new force on the World Series stage. The Astros are back, for the first time in a dozen years, and they want to stay a while.

    Houston Astros starting pitcher Lance McCullers (43) throwing in the fifth inning of the game between the Houston Astros and the Tampa Bay Rays in Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, July 12, 2015.