With April being Child Abuse Prevention Month three major organizations are coming together to try to prevent a horrible thing that is very common, even in our small community, child abuse. The Southern Ute Indian Tribe, Ignacio School District and the Town of Ignacio have joined together to help bring awareness to the issue by hosting a Fun Color Run.
“If this is not talked about, this will never be addressed and it will never go away. This event will hopefully bring to light what adults can do, kids can do to prevent and to get help, ” Robin Duffy-Wirth, SunUte Fitness Manger at SunUte Community Center said.
The Southern Ute Social Services Division does 15-20 child abuse investigations a month, that includes; child abuse, sexual assault and child neglect.
“We want to bring awareness to our community that this does happen here, it is very prevalent in our community,” Division Head of Southern Ute Social Services, Shelly Thompson said.
Even though the run is meant to bring awareness and to have fun these entities have ensured that they are sending a message, a message of love and support.
The Color Fun Run started from Social Services and the Southern Ute Police Department wanting to collaborate to show support for the community.
Now the collaboration has sparked the interest of departments within the Tribe’s Permanent Fund, Growth Fund and entities of the Town.
Over 1,000 kids and community members are expected to participate in the event to bring awareness to child abuse.
The Southern Ute Police Department and Social Services have ensured that there are trained professionals there to help provide support for the kids.
With Social Services trying to expand their reach they are looking to not only protect our youth, but also help their parents.
“The only way we are going to heal each other is to help each other,” she said. The Division of Social Services is always looking for foster parents and child care providers. “We want to keep our kids in our community.”
The Fun Color Run will have two registration tables, one at the Ignacio High School and another at the Ignacio Middle School. Two course levels will be available for different abilities. The Ignacio School buses will run after this event to take the kids home. If you would like to support our youth you are welcome to come out and remember to wear a white shirt.
If you are interested in becoming a foster parent or childcare providers please contact the Division of Social Services 970-563-0209. There will also be a Foster care Recruitment Dinner held on April 28 from 5:30 p.m.- 7:30 p.m. at the Multi-Purpose Facility, childcare and dinner will be provided.