Silver and blue pinwheels are popping up around the Wenatchee Valley to mark Child Abuse Prevention Month.

Throughout April, organizations and individuals plan activities and promote messages to raise awareness on the importance of positive childhood experiences.

According to the Chelan Douglas CASA program, 390,000 children in the U-S are ushered into dependency court and foster care due to abuse and/or neglect.

CASA volunteers support those children and families by working with child welfare employees and school social workers to fund necessary resources that will improve outcomes.

"These are volunteers from the community who we recruit, train and have them advocate for the best interests of children and youth," CASA executive director Lisa Melvin said. "They advocate in courtrooms and essentially they will talk to parents, extended family, therapists, teachers, anyone who's involved in child's world to make recommendations to the court as to what is in their best interest."

Outside the Chelan County Courthouse, dozens of silver and blue pinwheels are visible from Orondo Avenue along with a banner signaling Child Abuse Prevention Month and #PinwheelsforPrevention.

"Using the pinwheels, research has shown this kind of experience is reinforced and that people respond positively to the pinwheels because they represent childlike, whimsy and lightheartedness," Melvin said. "This is essentially CASA's position as well, where we envision a world where every child thrives in a safe and loving home, free from abuse and neglect. That's what the pinwheel represents, that children grow up happy, healthy, and prepared to succeed and supportive families in our communities."

If you would like to show support, the CASA program has many pinwheels for the community to put out. You can call the CASA office at 509-662-7350 or contact CASA through their website. The website also offers links on how you can donate or volunteer.

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