Decatur County 4 Kids is presenting the second annual Happy Kids, Happy Families, Happy Lives Conference 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday Oct. 13.
The Happy Kids conference will be hosting several speakers to talk about the realities and consequences of child abuse. Decatur County 4 Kids is a chartered Prevent Child Abuse Indiana council. 4 Kids’ goal is to educate people about child abuse, as well as empower people to work toward solutions.
There is a $10 fee for attendees which can be waived if the fee is a hardship. Teresa Hoening, 4 Kids chairwoman, said that the conference is aimed at education, and 4 Kids doesn’t want money to be an issue. Included will be breakfast, lunch, snacks, and a canvas tote bag which will be filled with information. There is enough room for 10 more attendees.
The conference can also count for continuing education credits for police, social workers, foster parents, and day care providers.
Being held at the Hampton Inn, the conference will open with registration and a continental breakfast at 8 to 8:45 a.m. At 9 a.m. the first keynote speaker: Terry Hall, will present “Abused Twice: Once by the Suspect, Once by the System.” Terry Hall has worked 30 years with the Indianapolis Police Department (IPD), and spend seven years in the IPD Sex Offense Branch. His passion is to protect children from sexual molestation, a passion that stems from when he was molested at the age of eight.
At 11:30 a.m. lunch will be served, and speaking will be the second keynote speaker, Ed Pereira, presenting, “The Truths About Childhood Abuse that Few of Us Talk About.” Ed Pereira has been a clinical social worker for 35 years. He has administered treatment to not only victims, but the abusers. He was a founding member of Midwest Regional Network for Intervention with Sexual Offenders, and also a member of Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers. His goal is to teach people how to value themselves and teach people to believe that they are worthy of love and belonging.
At 2:30 p.m. will be the final speakers, Jason Wayne Davis and Diana Booker, presenting “Their Story: Survivors of Abuse.” Davis and Booker will be sharing how they transformed their abusive childhoods in a way which they could continue to live productive and healthy lives.
Between each speaker will be “break out” sessions with displays and booths relating to child abuse.
Included in the registration fee will be the opportunity to win 14 available door prizes, all valued at approximately $100 each. Included will be $25 gas cards, a yearly family pass to the Indianapolis Zoo, and one to the Cincinnati Zoo, and a year-long family pass for the YMCA. Prizes were donated by the Decatur County Memorial Hospital, Devon Parsons Memorial Fund, YMCA, First Federal Bank, Greensburg Police Department, Duke Energy, Children’s Services, Napoleon State Bank, One Community One Family, Decatur County Primary Care, WTRE, and Tree City Medical Partners.
Decatur County 4 Kids is in its sixth year of existence in Decatur County and decided to hold the conference in order to be more proactive within the community. In the past 4 Kids could be seen at fairs with fliers and information. 4 Kids, Hoening said, hopes to make the Happy Kids, Happy Families, Happy Lives Conference a yearly event set in October.
4 Kids is also offering educational material to Decatur County schools about preventing sexual abuse and bullying. With $200 million in budget cuts from Judge Jim Payne, former director of Indiana’s Department of Child Services, 4 Kids has been cut from state funding completely. 4 Kids will be in need of grants to fund the programs.
Contact: Tess Rowing 812-663-3111 x7004