A blue pinwheel has come to be the symbol of child abuse and neglect prevention. This classic children’s toy represents wonder, hope, and happiness—things all children deserve. Pinwheels and the pinwheel garden are unique, eye-catching ways to raise awareness and show your commitment to children and your community.
More and more organizations are using pinwheels during April to promote Child Abuse Prevention Month events. A popular activity is to “plant” a pinwheel garden in front of public buildings and other spaces. It’s as simple as buying or making blue pinwheels, then asking for volunteers—children, educators, politicians, prevention professionals—to place them into the ground for a dazzling display. Drivers and other passersby will see them when they catch the wind, bringing smiles and awareness to the cause.
Add a Special Twist
- Talk to your mayor, governor, or other high-ranking official about kicking off Child Abuse Prevention Month with a pinwheel garden. Plant the garden around the capitol building, town hall, or other prominent building. Have government officials, child advocates, parents, and children plant the pinwheels together. Send a press release to the media a couple of weeks prior so the event gets coverage.
- Have students write a message of gratitude on paper pinwheels. Put the pinwheels in front of the school or other special space.
- Ask for a modest donation from each person who wants to plant a pinwheel in your pinwheel garden. Give all proceeds to a child-abuse-prevention organization.
- Get creative with your arrangement of the pinwheels. Line a high-trafficked street, form a shape such as an awareness ribbon, or make the pinwheels into one giant “flower.”
- Take pictures to share on social media. Don’t forget to use the hashtags #ChildAbusePrevention and #PinwheelGarden.