To love and protect our children

Employee News & Views Editor: February 28, 20144 Comments

Hi, my name is Julie Bowen and I’m addicted to helping children. Yes, I said it – but I am not ashamed! It’s just the way I was wired and my love for children started as early as 10 years old when I began babysitting and dreaming of becoming a nurturing mom myself someday.

As a pediatric nurse for 22 years – 9.5 here at Community Regional, I’ve seen things that I wish I never had. I’ve seen children so mistreated and abused and obviously byproducts of the most un-nurturing environments. Unfortunately, as nurses, we don’t get to pick our patients and at Community Regional, the Valley’s only Level 1 trauma center, we provide care to some of the most critically injured children – some of them severely abused, scared and heartbroken. Many of them know nothing else because it’s just their “normal”. When I watch the evening news and see a case of child abuse, I can’t help but wonder if that child will be another patient on my unit – or if my peers in the emergency room cared for that child.

My passion for helping children extends deeply to community outreach efforts to stop violence against children because it’s not normal, and adults do know better – or at least they should. I have been involved with First Five Fresno County for the past four years working on a committee to educate professionals about child abuse prevention. This year, there’s a focus to educate EVERYONE we can because here’s the shocking reality happening right here in our community:

An astonishing 19,000 child abuse reports are filed each year; 2,300 confirmed cases (because emotional abuse is difficult to confirm.) On an average, six cases of child abuse are filed per day in Fresno County and our hospital is likely to see those children needing medical treatment. Heartbreaking, isn’t it? If I could only wish upon a star, I would make each of those child abuse cases disappear – undo it – prevent it from ever happening to another child again.

The Lisa Project, a free interactive exhibit about child abuse prevention, is coming to Fresno with this mission from April 2 through May 4, 2014 on Tuesdays through Fridays from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the campus of Central Unified School District. Six children will tell their story as the visitors make their way through the exhibit.

My hope is by educating people in our community about the different forms of child abuse, we as a community will speak up and do a better job of protecting our kids. I encourage you to visit this exhibit or even volunteer your time to help run the exhibit. The Lisa Project needs compassionate members of our community to step up and to speak up so please consider volunteering your time and please, speak up if you witness someone physically or verbally abusing a child — say something for that child and report it. If they treat their child like that in public, can you imagine how they are treated at home, behind the closed doors? Unfortunately, on the pediatric floor we see the results of what happens behind those closed doors and it’s sad – far beyond normal.

Abused children have a higher probability to perpetuate the cycle, becoming abusers themselves. We need to help break the cycle and promote a healthier Fresno County. We need to love and protect our children. You can start by sharing this blog right now.

By Julie Bowen, Manager Pediatric Unit

Community Medical Centers is a sponsor of the local Lisa Project. Nurses can gain clinical proficiency, helping them to climb the Registered Nurse Career Ladder at Community Medical Centers by donating their time to the Lisa Project for as little as 3 hours in the month of April. (Interested nurses, please see your manager about this RN Career Ladder opportunity.)

To learn more about the Lisa Project, click here.                                        To volunteer for the Lisa Project, click here.

4 responses to To love and protect our children

Valuable information

Sexual abuse and child abuse is increased a lot in last time . It is good that many associations, trusts and welfare groups are working to stop it and help the victims. Lisa Project is really going well and I want to congratulate their team , physio and volunteers to being part of this nobel cause .

To Love And Protect Our Children

In my years of working in Pediatric, I thought I seen all types of child abuse. I thought I knew the environment in which my patients were from. When I went to the Lisa Project exhibit, it opened my eyes. The scences and smells of each room created a reality of how each child lived and suffered from child abuse. It gave me opportunity to learn and be more aware of child abuse. I was amazed after I went through the Lisa Project exhibit that I wanted to volunteer. I am glad that Community Regional Medical Center is a sponser of the Lisa Project. Lets take a stand and be more proactive for the children and against child abuse.Take a tour of the Lisa Project and increase your awareness of child abuse.

To love and protect our children

I have worked in pediatrics for 7.5 years, from UMC to CRMC. As a pediatric nurse, we have seen many cases of child abuse or suspected child abuse. I was honored to know that CRMC was a sponsor for the Lisa Project. It is good to know that my employer takes an interest in child abuse prevention in Fresno. As a volunteer for the Lisa Project, I had the opportunity to experience the exhibit. Every individual must experience the Lisa Project for themselves. I can only say that my eyes were opened to the pain and reality of child abuse. Child abuse is real, and it is happening everyday, right here in our neighborhoods, on every side of town. It is all about being AWARE. AWARENESS leads to MOTIVATION which leads to ACTION. Please everyone, take the time to tour the Lisa Project, and let's take a stand together to stop child abuse.

Thank You for your commitment

Thank You for your commitment to our valley children

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