Pinwheel planting marks start of Child Abuse Prevention Month

Keiki from Kama'aina Kids at Moanalua Preschool plant pinwheels along the pathway to the Military & Family Support Center.

Keiki from Kama’aina Kids at Moanalua Preschool plant pinwheels
along the pathway to the Military & Family Support
Center.

Story and photo by Brandon Bosworth

Staff Writer

The Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Military & Family Support Center (MFSC) hosted a special pinwheel planting ceremony April 1 to mark the beginning of Child Abuse Prevention Month.

About 80 children from the Kama’aina Kids program at the neighboring Moanalua Preschool planted pinwheels in front of the center located at 4827 Bougainville Drive.

This is the second year in a row that MFSC has held the pinwheel ceremony, but the first in which children were invited to participate.

“Last year it was mostly military personnel planting the pinwheels,” said Tyra Lamb, family advocacy program prevention and education specialist.

“This year we had the great idea of involving the children.”

Pinwheels are the new national symbol of the movement to prevent child abuse.

“The old symbol was a blue ribbon with the blue representing bruises” said Dawn Ogden, counseling and advocacy supervisor. “Pinwheels are more positive and represent the winds of change.”

Lamb concurred. “Pinwheels make you happy,” she said. “The ribbons represented pain.”

The pinwheel ceremony was thought to be more effective than a standard proclamation marking the start of Child Abuse Prevention Month.

“Planting pinwheels takes the place of a formal proclamation,” said Michelle Dewberry, victim advocate. “It’s more hands-on so the kids can be involved.”

Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam was not the only military installation on Oahu holding a pinwheel planting ceremony on April 1. All branches of the armed services held similar ceremonies throughout the island. On April 7, there will be a pinwheel event at the Hawaii State Capitol from 2 to 4 p.m.

Another pinwheel planting ceremony is planned for 11 a.m. April 10 at the Center Drive Child Development Center at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. Rear Adm. Frank Ponds, commander of Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific, will attend the ceremony.

Next year, MFSC hopes to include students from neighboring Pearl Harbor Elementary School in the pinwheel event.

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Category: News