Every April, Child Abuse Prevention Month is an opportunity to learn about the signs of child abuse and how to prevent it.
Recently, Eric Valdes, head teacher at Gold Coast Christian School shared a poem he wrote about a student who seems shy, but in reality, is a victim of abuse. The purpose of this poem is to remind us that sometimes we may think that everything is fine at home, when in reality it is not.
Learn more about how to prevent child abuse, how to help when you think something might be wrong, and how you can help raise awareness and help protect children in your community.
THE 'SHY' CHILD
By Eric Valdes, head teacher,
Gold Coast Christian School
What is the desire of most of them?
Perhaps they're waiting for the bell to ring,
especially after a long and very busy day,
but that is not the case of the "shy" kid.
He almost doesn't work, and you think he is lazy,
"He might have fallen down", he has a bruised hand,
you whisper to yourself: "He will drive me crazy",
But the first thing he needs is someone who understands.
While his classmates play and have fun,
He is sitting on that abandoned, dirty bench,
looking at the radiant, burning sun
as another child approaches, and says: "let's play".
He shakes his head, rejecting the invitation,
As the other boy turns his back and runs away,
You're still wondering why he's so shy, but paying little attention,
You've not noticed his silent cry, despite so many days.
"Why don't you eat your lunch?, it must be delicious",
The kindest girl in class asked him, smiling,
You've seen his strange behavior, but you have no suspicion
that there must be something more than shyness that he is hiding.
For him, being at home is like a devastating deluge,
that floods his young life with sadness and tears,
but his school is that unique, safe refuge
that if it were up to him, he would never leave.
"O God, open my eyes so that I can see,
Don't let my busy schedule make me blind,
Help me be the healing hand for Your child in need,
Please, Almighty Teacher, hear my plea".