HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — More than 1,200 child abuse cases were reviewed by the National Children’s Advocacy Center (NCAC) in 2021.

Advocates are fighting to reduce these numbers by bringing more attention to the issue.

Madison County along with the NCAC is recognizing April as “Child Abuse Prevention Month” as they work together to advocate for child abuse awareness and teach adults how to recognize the signs.

Child abuse cases range can range from sexual assault to child neglect and physical abuse. NCAC Community Awareness and Prevention Director Pam Clasgens told News 19 parents and adults can “play a role” in keeping children safe. These roles include observing daily behavior and interactions.

“One of the most important things that adults can do if they see a change in a child’s behavior is just ask them about it,” said Clasgens. “Those kinds of things are really important.”

Clasgens went on to say recognizing mood swings or attitude changes towards certain activities can be a sign that a child is experiencing some sort of abuse.

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As the digital world evolves so should the approach to online safety. Clasgens says children can suffer from abuse through unhealthy virtual connections as well.

“In Madison County…digital safety is a big concern. As parents and adults, we can talk to our kids. We can talk to our kids about healthy relationships, what it means to be safe online, and talk to our kids about the apps and online programs that they’re using every day.”

NCAC will be hosting free virtual trainings each week during Child Abuse Prevention Month. In the trainings, participants will learn what signs to look for when a child is facing abuse and how to appropriately approach them about it.

If you or someone you know is in need of services from the National Children’s Advocacy Center, you can contact them at (256) 533 – KIDS(5437) or visit