ISSUE 1 ................................................... MAY 28, 1999


The National Parent Consortium is proud to introduce the first issue of the NPC News Bulletin. Each issue will feature a different theme and will highlight Consortium activities and related maternal and child health, as well as other health-related, information for families. The first issue focuses on Violence Prevention.

Please visit the NPC website to learn more about who we are and what we do.

Violence Prevention

Bright Futures For Families
National Video Teleconference
Keeping Kids Healthy & Safe

Regardless of culture or background, one concept we all can agree on is that being part of a family is at the core of our existence as human beings. All parents want their children to grow up healthy and well. At the same time we recognize that we live in challenging times. Violence of all kinds is at unprecedented levels in our society. How can we change these destructive patterns? Is there a way we can work together to make the world a safer and healthier place for kids to be kids? This was the theme of the third in the series of Bright Futures for Families national video teleconferences presented on March 24th. It focused on violence prevention communication and development of assets for children (infancy/early childhood, children, and adolescents). Over 175 sites were involved in this interactive video teleconference, broadcast simultaneously in English and Spanish.

Videotapes, along with ancillary handouts, are available for purchase for both the March-24,-1999 and October 6, 1998 national video teleconferences on violence prevention for families. To request an order form contact Laura by e-mail: or fax: 617-847-1593.

Definition of Violence

Violence is the threatened or actual use of physical force or power against another person, against oneself, or against a group or community, which either results in, or has a high likelihood of resulting in injury, death, or deprivation.
(Developed and used by the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

Congressional Forum

NPC hosted a Congressional Forum to help educate congressional members and their staff, and the public on important issues that face the future health of all children and their families on Thursday, 20 May 1999. Three topics were highlighted: Oral Health, Environmental Health with a focus on Lead Poisoning, and Violence Prevention. This issue will share highlights on the topic of violence prevention, and future issues will highlight the other two topics.

Professionals and parents who know too well about violence and the need for its prevention took time to share their insight and stories. Dr. Bob Sege, of the Pediatric and Adolescent Health Research Center in Boston, MA, provided the following points on violence. It is a learned behavior. Family dynamics can produce violent behaviors through abuse. It is important to communicate with children and keep actively involved in their lives. A young mother with the Head Start Association spoke candidly about her fears of sending her child to a public school because of the potential of violence.

All of the testimony was very moving. We want to take this opportunity to highlight the testimony of Luis Cardona, Project Coordinator for the District of Columbia Community Prevention Partnership. Below are excerpts from Luis' testimony, words of an individual who knows first hand the need for violence prevention. The full text will be posted to the NPC website.

"I am here today to provide you with an understanding of just how important violence prevention is in this nation, I will provide you with my practical perspective as a practitioner in the streets that I work with, as a parent of my 1 1/2 year old son, Anthony, and as an individual that has experience hands on with the impact of violence in my life personally."

"While I do not have a Ph.D. like most of the distinguished group of panelists that have spoken before me, I do have a Ph.D. in the School of hard knocks, a survivor of being shot five times, a survivor of gang membership and acts of violence which only by the grace of God that I am here, a survivor of losing more than 20 close friends of mine to these mean streets, a survivor of apologizing to so many of my friend's mothers for our stupid decision making that cost the lives of their sons, a survivor of growing up in a household without a father in my life, but once again by the grace of God, and thanks perhaps to th