The walls of the Sampson County Child Advocacy Center are now filled with vibrant images that would bring a smile to any child’s face, thanks to the efforts of one local teen.
For his Eagle Scout Leadership project, Reid Walters collected donations to purchase materials to change the look and feel of the Advocacy Center. Using vinyl decals, Walters created an infinity symbol filled with butterflies and large silhouettes of children holding pinwheels to make the facility more “child friendly.”
“The Child Advocacy Center is now a more child-friendly facility,” Walters explained. “The neutral gray painted walls are graced with simple silhouettes of children playing and holding colorful pinwheels. Hopefully, this small change in the environment will make the children’s process at the Child Advocacy Center easier.”
The Child Advocacy Center began in 2014 as a neutral place that offers a safe haven for abused children, with its mission being to minimize trauma to victims of sexual and severe physical abuse and their non-offending family members by providing a centralized, safe and child-friendly facility.
Walters says he got the idea of revamping the CAC when Sampson County Sheriff Jimmy Thornton talked to his church about the needs at the location.
“I feel as if God placed Mr. Jimmy Thornton in my tracks that morning to take on this tasks as I was venturing several different options,” Walters shared. “This seemed to be the most suitable one.”
Once Walters contacted the staff at the CAC, he learned their main concern was the lack of a child-friendly atmosphere for clients. A large butterfly infinity sign was added to the walls of the hallway.
“The management staff of the Child Advocacy Center seem very pleased with the butterfly infinity sign in the hallway, and the Child Advocacy Center logo in the center of the design turned out especially well,” Walters said.
Life-size silhouettes of children holding pinwheels adds a special touch. Pinwheels are used to represent the CAC’s effort to raise awareness of child abuse.
“The area felt more child friendly immediately after the installation of the decals, logos and life-size silhouettes,” Walters explained. “I feel the Child Advocacy Center will benefit from these designs in many ways.”
Walters didn’t stop there — just last week he made a donation to the Child Advocacy Center for more than $650. This money, he said, can be utilized by the center to benefit its clients in other ways.
“The process of the Child Advocacy Center will run more smoothly and make our community children feel more comfortable, as well as the parents and staff,” Walters said.
Walters is a Life Scout with Troop 27 in Clinton. To earn the Eagle Scout ranking, Walters had to plan, develop and provide leadership to others in a service project helpful to the community. He is the son of Jason and Jeannie Walters.
Reach Kristy D. Carter at 910-592-8137, ext. 2588. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd. Like us on Facebook.