National child abuse prevention charitable trust, Child Matters, hopes the overwhelming national outrage following the death of a three year old Taupo boy as a result of child abuse, will ultimately help lead to a greater protection of New Zealand’s children.
Three year old Moko Rangitoheriri died in August 2015 following two months of serious and systematic violent abuse at the hands of two caregivers. The pair have pleaded guilty to a charge of manslaughter and will be sentenced on June 27 in Rotorua.
Child Matters General Manager, Relationships and Operations, Jane Searle says the death of Moko has really struck a chord with New Zealanders, with thousands supporting upcoming #marchformoko events around the country.
"Unfortunately, we can become desensitised to the family violence that is sadly part of everyday life for too many people in our community," says Ms Searle.
"The death of Moko has broken through some barriers and really touched people - and the media - which is an admirable response to a devastating situation.
"We hope that this will help keep child abuse front of mind for everyone in our community, as we all have a role to play in keeping New Zealand’s children protected and safe."
Ms Searle says that it is not always easy to tell if a child is being hurt or is at risk, but strongly urges anyone who may have concerns about a child to speak up.
"Every New Zealander has a critical role to play in keeping our children safe, and together, we can genuinely make a difference."
Child Matters will be involved in the upcoming #marchformoko events, and will be the starting point for the Hamilton march at 480 Angelsea St, Hamilton, on Sunday 22 May at 1pm.
Child Matters is New Zealand’s only national charitable trust dedicated to the prevention of child abuse. Established in 1994, Child Matters provides child abuse identification and prevention courses to organisations across New Zealand, and actively advocates for the rights of children.
For further information about the Hamilton #marchformoko event, go tohttps://www.facebook.com/events/1701442446777383/
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