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Hundreds Attend Block Parties to Fight Child Abuse

Communities from across Fort Smith came together Wednesday night to fight child abuse. Step Up, Speak Out hosted block parties at four different locations.

Communities from across Fort Smith came together Wednesday night to fight child abuse. Step Up, Speak Out hosted block parties at four different locations.

Adults and kids got to enjoy games, food, and live entertainment.

The goal is to educate the community about child sexual abuse, so that it can be prevented. “I definitely hope that our community being here tonight will inspire people,” said Krista Morland, a parent.

Morland attended one of the block parties with her two kids and people from church.

“We are always looking for ways to help serve our community and child abuse is definitely something that we want to try to stop in Fort Smith,” she said.

Organizations like the Sebastian County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, Bost Inc., and the Girl’s Shelter of Fort Smith also attended and provided parents with information.

“The issue of child sexual abuse in our community is sort of horrifying and huge, much bigger than we all thought,” said Donna Bragg, Director of Marketing and Communications for Sparks Health System.

Sparks hosted one of the block parties. “We're gonna do our part to help,” said Bragg.

People attended block parties at Girls Inc., Martin Luther King, Jr. Park, Spradling Elementary School, and at the Evans Boys & Girls Club.