Programs Offered To Help Prevent Child Abuse

Programs Offered To Help Prevent Child Abuse

POSTED: Thursday, March 1, 2012 - 1:49pm

UPDATED: Thursday, March 1, 2012 - 1:50pm

Over $145,000 was awarded to the Child Crisis Center of El Paso (CCEP) in support of providing emergency child respite care services and parenting education classes to help prevent the incidence of child abuse and neglect.

Various area centers will partner up to offer a variety of services for stress-plagued parents in need of support to protect their children and prevent child abuse.

“Studies have shown that stress in the family is a leading cause of child abuse and neglect” said Al Velarde, Executive Director of the CCCEP. “When a parent reaches a level of stress that they can no longer cope with the situation, they often lash out at their children who then become the unintended victims of violence and neglect”. Moreover, research has shown that five protective factors are linked to a reduction of child abuse and neglect: (1) family functioning/resiliency, (2) social support, (3) knowledge of parenting/child development, (4) concrete support, and (5) nurturing and attachment.

This program will offer emergency respite care for children and youth ages newborn through 17, emergency daycare services for children newborn through 12, parent education classes and resource referrals. By providing these services, the CCCEP hopes to help parents increase and support the five protective factors for families at risk.

The program has several components to ensure that broad arrays of services are available to achieve the goals of preventing child abuse in our region. The services and components are as follows:

Crisis Hotline – The CCCEP has established the HOPE line, 562-HOPE (4673) for parents experiencing stress and crisis to call for help.
Crisis Counseling – Trained CCCEP staff will provide immediate crisis counseling upon receipt of a crisis call to mitigate the emergency and identify immediate solutions including the admission of their child (ren) for respite care. A Case Manager will meet with the parent within 24 hours of a respite care admission to assess the crisis at hand.
Emergency Respite Care – The CCCEP will provide emergency respite care, i.e., residential care, for any child age’s newborn through 13 where it is determined residential child care is an appropriate service for the crisis. For youth ages 14 through 17, the respite care will be provided by the EPCFC
Emergency Day Care – A limited amount of funding is available to provide emergency day care services when it is assessed that residential care is not necessary. Daycare services will be provided by the YWCA and are available for children ages newborn through 12 years of age.
Parenting Education Classes – The Child Crisis Center provides parenting education for parents with children 0-17 years old. The Systematic Training for Effective Parenting (STEP) program is evidence based program that focuses on topics such as misbehavior, motivation, discipline and helps parents gain confidence in their abilities to parent. Other sessions focus on beliefs and feelings, listening and talking to your child and choosing the right approach that best fits the parent and their family.
• Crisis Counseling and emergency residential (respite) services are available 24/7, weekends and holidays.

If a parent is in crisis or at a breaking point due to stress and recognizes that they are in need of help to prevent acting out against their children, they are asked to call the CCCEP’s Hope line at 562-HOPE (4673) for crisis counseling.

This program is available to all Texas families living in the El Paso region. There are no income limitations. However, request for service must be voluntary on the part of the parent and there must not be any open Child Protection Services cases or court ordered referrals. The CCCEP will not turn away any request for an admission of a child from an ineligible family and will offer emergency shelter services utilizing other funding sources. 

For more information regarding the Respite Care and Parenting Education Program and any other services, visit our website at


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