Soon, images of blue and silver will be turning across windows, walls, fields and lawns in Arvada as pinwheel gardens begin to bloom.
The month of April is national child abuse prevention awareness month, and throughout April, the Ralston House, an Arvada nonprofit providing services to sexually and physically abused children and teens, is selling blue and silver pinwheels to encourage abuse awareness and prevention and raise funds.
“Pinwheels are happy,” Ashley Irlando, development officer at the Ralston House said. “They’re not sad, as they’re being the sign for hope and healing — they’re really unique.”
Started in 2011, the Ralston House Pinwheel program sells individual and sets of pinwheels to citizens and businesses throughout the Front Range, encouraging them to create gardens of blue and silver in support of child abuse prevention awareness. Over the last four years, organizers have seen the program grow and expand throughout the community. Since its inception, the program has raised more than $61,000 benefiting their programs and services, and organizers hope to raise an additional $40,000 this year.
“It’s a really unique way for people to make a difference,” Irlando said. “You never know who you’re going to talk to that one; might need our services or two; might know someone who does.”
As part of the program, participants receive a kit, or a box of instructions and suggestions on ways to plant the pinwheels, sell the pinwheels and advertise the pinwheels. To show off the pinwheels, businesses throughout the Front Range will plant gardens of pinwheels wherever they are visible, outside, inside, or on top of a cupcake, to creatively show off their support for the Ralston House.
“We try and keep it fun,” said Hannah Jackson, general manager at Rheinlander Bakery, “Each week we do a vanilla cupcake with a pinwheel on top, and we do a kid’s favorite every week, such as Oreo and twist, with $1 of each cupcake sold going back to the Ralston House.”
From large gardens around Faith Bible Chapel and Northglenn High School to the small individual pinwheel placed in a window or lawn, the program helps to encourage individuals to be aware of child abuse and organizations, such as the Ralston House, which can help them.
“Child abuse is everybody’s business, and we want people to get involved and know about it,” Irlando said about the program. “Slowing down our front doors is always a big goal.”
Ralston House is selling pinwheels to be planted the month of April promoting hope and healing for abuse victims. The nonprofit has three locations servicing the community, in Arvada, Lakewood and Northglenn.
For more information about the Ralston House or to order pinwheels, contact Ashley Irlando at 720-898-6744.