When you think about hurting kids, one of the first thing that comes to mind is children who have been abused or neglected. Over 1.2 million children suffer harm from child abuse or neglect per year. That equates to 17.1 children per 1,000 or approximately 1 in every 58 children. When children who are endangered by abuse or neglect are added to those figures, the numbers rise to over 2.9 million kids or 39.5 per thousand. That equates to one in every 25 children. The reach and magnitude of abuse and neglect are as varied as the forms of abuse and the types of children who experience it.
In the article “When The Bough Breaks,” Martin Johnson wrote:
“Perhaps the most important part of understanding child abuse is realizing the depth of physical and emotional pain the child victim must feel. As adults in ministry to children, we can see the crisis intellectually, yet it’s extremely difficult for us to genuinely empathize with the hurt and isolation the child feels – unless we’ve felt it too. And sometimes we simply don’t recognize that real, serious, ongoing abuse is taking place in the homes of some of the children we minister to every week. Sometimes, we just don’t realize the problem.”
WHAT ARE ABUSE AND NEGLECT?