Prevention Services

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OCFS HEARS Family Line

(Help, Empower, Advocate, Reassure and Support)

1-888-55HEARS ( 1-888-554-3277 )
Monday-Friday 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

The HEARS family line assists parents and families by providing resources and referrals to a variety of services. Caring representatives guide families to services including food, clothing, housing, medical and behavioral health care services, parenting education and child care.

Representatives are available to help Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. The line offers messages in 12 languages.

Protective Factors: Strategies to Strengthen Families

April is Child Abuse Prevention and Family Strengthening and Support Month. Follow the April 2024 Protective Factors calendar with simple daily action steps that make a difference in the lives of children and families.

Building protective factors is a good way to develop your strong family:

Preventing Child Abuse

Child abuse is an issue that exists in communities throughout New York State. Every citizen can play a role in helping to protect the safety and well-being of our children. The OCFS website provides valuable information about programs to help keep children safe from abuse and maltreatment.

Child abuse prevention involves education and raising public awareness about ways to prevent serious and often life-threatening child injuries from occurring in the first place. The "Shaken Baby Syndrome" information will alert you to the grave dangers of permanent injury or death that can result from shaking an infant.

"New York Loves Safe Babies" is a 30-minute visual presentation for caretakers of infants and young children. This resource provides helpful strategies to parents and other caretakers for keeping infants and young children safe.

It takes all of us working together to keep children safe and secure. You may know families who are at risk because of stress or other factors and who would benefit from the resources listed on this website. The OCFS website contains child abuse prevention information in Spanish, Chinese, Russian and Arabic, as well as English. By working together, we can continue to provide our communities with the tools they need to help protect vulnerable lives and build brighter futures for the children of New York State.

Finally, if you think a child may be at risk of abuse or neglect, please contact the New York State Child Abuse Hotline (State Central Register for Child Abuse and Maltreatment) at 1-800-342-3720. If you believe that a child may be in immediate danger, call 911 or contact your local law enforcement.

Thank you for your commitment and dedication to helping raise awareness about child abuse and for sharing with your community the information you find on the OCFS website.