News | April 29, 2022

Pinwheel Parade educates, raises awareness of effects of child abuse

By Stefanie Hauck DLA Land and Maritime Public Affairs

A sense of normalcy was in the chilly morning air as the first Pinwheel Parade in two years stepped off from the Defense Supply Center Columbus’ Child Development Center April 26.

A blond haired child squats and places a pinwheel into the ground.
A child places a pinwheel into the ground in front of the CDC at the end of the Pinwheel Parade.
A blond haired child squats and places a pinwheel into the ground.
Pinwheel Parade
A child places a pinwheel into the ground in front of the CDC at the end of the Pinwheel Parade.
Photo By: Shannon Mormon/DSCC
VIRIN: 220426-D-PJ986-4163

Children from the CDC hopped, walked, waddled and rode around the block waving their pinwheels escorted by DSCC Police, parents and CDC staff members. Personnel in Fire and Police vehicles made sure the children stayed safe throughout the parade route.

Land and Maritime Deputy Commander Kenneth Watson and Land and Maritime Chief of Staff U.S. Air Force Col. Christopher Tooman along with DSCC Installation Site Manager Kristine Freels and Deputy Installation Site Manager Mike Wood led the parade.

Controlled chaos ensued as the children rounded the corner and navigated the home stretch back to the CDC to plant their pinwheels in the ground but they had plenty of help as the DSCC Police created special holes to make the planting easier for all. Children came in their classroom groups and planted pinwheels, some of them handmade and others a metallic silver and blue, into the small gardens and along the sidewalk leading up to the center.

“We use it as an outreach and a reminder to people that there are resources available to help them with prevention,” said DSCC Family Services Program Manager Michiel DeVito. “Every year it's done at the Child Development Center, and the children come out and parade around the block. And I'm so thankful to the CDC for their partnership in that.”

Parents were each given ‘goody’ bags full of resources and information of how to end child abuse. 

“All In To End Child Abuse” is this year’s theme with the goal of ending child abuse within the Department of Defense and its communities.

The DoD encourages all of us to prevent abuse from happening in the first place. This observance strives to raise awareness of ways to prevent child abuse and neglect, help recognize the signs of abuse, as well as provide knowledge of what to do when there are concerns.

For more information about the DSCC Family Advocacy Program, contact DeVito at Michiel.devito@dla.mil.

Watch a video of the event