Child abuse hotline gets 226 calls from Gympie folk

THE Child Abuse Prevention Service hotline has reported receiving 226 calls from Gympie residents.

The figure has been highlighted as the service marks 40 years of supporting children and families nationwide.

CAPS telephone support workers have provide advice, information and referrals to families in crisis, children in need of help, and community members with concerns about the welfare of a child.

The work has resulted in the service fielding more than a million calls for support from across the country in the past four decades.

The service recently launched a national campaign encouraging preventative action to keep children safe.

The campaign, timed with the service's anniversary, is calling for all Australians to take action and help prevent child abuse.

CAPS operates Australia's only free, national telephone service dedicated solely to child abuse prevention along with a range of parent education, community development and support programs.

It offers offender programs as well as counselling and family crisis centres that have reached tens of thousands of children and families.

CAPS chairman Andrew Grech said he was proud to celebrate the service's 40th year of service to the community but there had never been a more pressing need for the work of protecting children.

"The reach and impact of child abuse is devastating and ongoing," Mr Grech said.

"This campaign reminds us that we are all on the frontline and we all have a responsibility to prevent child abuse".

Although there is no easy solution, prevention and early intervention can make a difference.

CAPS has released a digital prevention pack to support families.

The free pack can be downloaded from www.childabuseprevention.com.au.

CAPS can be contacted on 1800688009 or at www.child abuseprevention.com.au.