Anyone needing an early shot of Yuletide cheer could have certainly basked in the season’s glow Friday at Old North State Winery in Mount Airy as it hosted the annual Surry County Stop Child Abuse Now (SCAN) Parade of Trees.
SCAN Director Tamara Veit said the event was a silent auction in which bidders can bid on one or more of the many decorated trees and wreaths. Area organizations and businesses, and even individuals, decorate trees or wreaths to donate, many of which have a theme related to the donor.
Veit said one item that really caught her eye this year was one Christmas tree decorated with sterling silver ornaments held up with blue ribbons.
“We have a life size snowman who is so cute he’s ridiculous,” said Veit. “You don’t have to take him down after Christmas. You could leave him up all year long because he is so personable. I am excited now. The winery was absolutely beautiful people were coming by Thursday to have a look.”
Veit said the event was a community favorite brought back after a hiatus. A total of 20 Christmas items was donated to the event this year. She said the parade of trees was just one of the fund raisers for SCAN staged throughout the year.
“We had a lot of really beautiful trees this year,” added Veit. “The community support has been amazing.” She said Logan Templeton volunteered to play piano for the event and featured Christmas as well as classical music. A chocolate fountain was also among the refreshments offered during the fundraiser.
Executive Director of the Exchange Center for Child Abuse Prevention of North Carolina Cynthia Napoleon-Hanger characterizes SCAN’s mission as “being there for people needing a little bit of help.” The exchange is a an umbrella organization seeking to prevent child abuse by a variety of programs including in-home intervention to help parents at risk of child abuse with counseling or teach problem solving and social skills.
She said four goals the exchange seeks to meet through programs such as SCAN is to be sure abused children are safe, parents learn how to utilize social supports and problem solving and using proper discipline skills to stop abusive behavior.
“We work with the entire family,” said Napoleon-Hangar. “We are re-parenting the parents, often re-unifying the family.”
Napoleon-Hangar also said in addition to helping with custody issues and re-establishing relationships with children and parents the group also offers respite care for families who just need a break in stressful situations before the worst happens.
She added SCAN programs can also open channels of communication with teens and parents as well as helping to navigate through issues with school and the juvenile justice system.
“Child abuse knows no certain season. It crosses all social, educational, economic and racial lines. Our goal is to treat and to prevent child abuse. In many cases this is not an issue of no love for the child,” explained Napoleon-Hangar. “Often parents simply don’t know how to be a parent. Many things we can do involve working with families in their home at no cost to them.”
Reach David Broyles at email@example.com or 719-1952.