The year 2020 has been an extraordinary year for all of us. Front and center has been COVID-19, and the implications this novel virus thrust upon all of us, our communities, our country, and the world. On August 19, 2019, in the shadow of this pandemic, we moved into our new beautiful Harvey E. Najim Children & Family Center and began serving child victims of sexual abuse and sever physical abuse.
What we and our partners saw, and continue to see, are children and families responding in remarkable ways as they enter the building and explore the campus, expressly designed to heal and restore. We have seen small children cry when it was time to leave play spaces, and an 11-year-old boy ask if he could have his next birthday party at ChildSafe after making a positive outcry of sexual abuse.
Such seemingly small gestures speak volumes about the impact our new center makes on all who enter; making them feel special and safe, and quietly conveying a sense of calm…a monumental achievement for a trauma-informed organization.
Then COVID-19 arrived in early spring of 2020, and radically changed our lives. Unfortunately, child abuse never stops. We are seeing a whole new array of stressors related to the pandemic and due to the stress related to the pandemic, child abuse cases are increasing in both numbers and severity.
As an essential service provider, we remained open and quickly pivoted our service delivery model to best meet the needs of the children and families we serve while maintaining the highest level of services possible as we implement ongoing measures to ensure the health and safety of our staff, partners, and the families we serve.
Through these unprecedented times, you and many others like you, have stood steadfast in your support of ChildSafe and our critical work. Your understanding of such a complex issue, and desire to help children heal from abuse, is so important to our community and our children, it shines bright in what has been a dark time in all our lives, but especially the young victims we serve.
It is difficult to express the gratitude all of us at ChildSafe have for you, and all our donors. Your unwavering commitment to our mission inspires us so we can continue to provide hope and healing to child abuse victims. On behalf of our staff and board members, partners, volunteers, and especially the families of Bexar County, I thank you for your generosity and lifting up the children and families we serve.
As you review this report, take pride in your investment and the difference you have made.
Best wishes of health and happiness to you and yours this holiday season.