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WV Version of “Super Nanny”

November 19, 2008

Charleston, WV – West Virginia's version of "super nanny" is being celebrated as part of the "World Day for the Prevention of Child Abuse."

Partners in Community Outreach offers 18 in-home family education programs throughout the state. In-home counselors, sometimes heralded as "super nannies," help families get through behavior, education and developmental issues.

Coordinator Angie Whitley says the tips and direction offered to families who ask for help are tailored to the present economic turbulence.

"When you add on all the other stresses that families are facing in today's times, with finances and job losses, it makes it that much more stressful."

She says the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that child abuse could be reduced by up to 40 percent if in-home programs were widely available.

In-home experts provide a stable source of information in a non-judgmental way, according to Whitley, who says those counselors often fill the roles that relatives used to play.

"We see families becoming more fragmented. It used to be that grandma lived right down the road, along with aunts and uncles, and other family members. You could rally them around you in tough times."

She says her group would like to expand and offer in-home programs in every county, but they need state funding to make that happen, and they're asking the governor to be an ally.

Deborah Smith/Deb Courson, Public News Service - WV