We read the tragic news about Jack Garcia, a 9 year old Goleta boy who was beaten and tortured to death by his mother and her boyfriend. Jack attended Brandon school until February, when his family moved to Maryland. We don’t know if CWS received any reports about this family, but Jack’s story is an important reminder to not be silent. Anyone who suspects child abuse can make a report to CWS by calling the Child Welfare Service hotline at (800) 367-0166. CWS often refers families to CALM for support and family strengthening. When CALM receives referrals from CWS through our Front Porch program, we reach out to the family to see how we can help. Last year, CALM received 508 referrals to our Front Porch program and provided service to 435 families. We have found that when we make contact with families, we are able to prevent re-referrals to CWS 95% of the time. I wish we had been able to help Jack. Here http://calm4kids.org/resources/ is information on how you can make a report and how to recognize abuse. We know there are other children like Jack in our community who need our help. CALM is expanding our Child Abuse Treatment work to serve more children countywide. To honor Jack’s memory and support CALM’s work preventing and treating child abuse, please consider a donation today.
CALM will not be silent for as long as it takes.
Cecilia Rodriguez, MFT
Executive Director Child Abuse Listening Mediation/CALM