The Linden branch of the Child Care and Protection Agency (CCPA) is on a mission to significantly decrease incidents of child abuse by targeting parents who are neglecting their children, thus leaving them vulnerable.A section of the graduating group at Linden Foundation Secondary School, Amelia’s WardA section of the graduation at Linden Foundation Secondary School Amelia’s WardFor 2018, hundreds of parents from eight communities across Region 10 (Upper Demerara-Berbice) have benefited from this special parenting training. During the week of June 17-22, 86 parents from Coomacka Mines graduated and 56 from the community of Amelia’s Ward. Other communities that benefited were Canvas City, Victory Valley, Old England, and Nottinghamshire.The Department of Public Information (DPI) reported that acting CCPA supervisor in Region 10, Huette Moore revealed that the initiative was the brainchild of Director of Children Services, Ann Greene. In a previous interview, Greene had said that one way to reduce the incidents of child abuse was to raise awareness among parents. Many parents, she said, lack the capacity to parent responsibly, thus putting their children at risk.In an invited comment, Moore said: “Parents have to see that they need to be the role models for their children by the example they set … when they get frustrated, they can come to CCPA for guidance on how to deal with the situation.”Moore revealed that parents found guilty of neglect would now face the full brunt of the law. As such, the Agency’s initiative aims to prevent familial situations from reaching to this stage, while decreasing incidents of abuse in the Region.At a recent graduation held at the Linden Foundation Secondary School in Amelia’s Ward on June 21, acting Linden Town Clerk Orleena Obermuller advised parents, “Good parenting means teaching him or her(the child) to lead a good and happy life in our imperfect world. Being a good parent means you need to teach your child morals: what is right and what is wrong. Setting limits and being firm and kind can be two keys to good discipline.”One graduate from the parenting training, Marcia Peters, explained that the programme was of tremendous benefit to her, and made a commitment to share what she learnt with others. “It has been a tremendous thing for me. I learned how to better deal with problems with children and I hope that this is a continuous programme, so that everybody that missed it will able to get the opportunity to learn how to handle situations better,” she said.Statistics in 2017 revealed that Region 10 has the highest child abuse rate, with child neglect topping the charts followed by child sexual abuse.The CCPA will be targeting as many communities as possible until the entire Region 10 has been reached. Other programmes such as the teenage pregnancy prevention programme will also be rolled out.