Tom "Taylor" Pyles is a child abuse survivor and the founder The Blue Ribbon Project. He has been a police officer with Annapolis Police Department for over a decade and is assigned as a Detective in the Criminal Investigations Section. When not working, you'll find him spending time with his family and out enjoying the countryside on two wheels.
There are four commonly recognized forms of child maltreatmentÃ¢ÂÂphysical abuse, neglect, psychological abuse, and sexual abuse. The definitions of these types of child maltreatment may vary depending on the State or the locality in which the first responder works. First responders should become familiar with the definitions that apply in their jurisdictions. Additionally, the signs of child maltreatment listed here do not indicate absolutely that child maltreatment has occurred.
We all have an obligation to stand up for the rights of children and to be their voice where it matters.
A few folks have suggested a great idea for those that want to support the Backpacks of Love program but do not live near the drop off points. We have created an Amazon Wish List that lists several of the items that are needed. It's a great way to purchase the items, get them shipped and then placed into an age appropriate backpack. This list is not all inclusive and will change based on needs...Below is a partial list from our Amazon Wish List
Some things to note:
There are hundreds upon hundreds of drug rehab programs in Maryland that claim they provide the most effective addiction treatment in the country. You can go on the internet and find drug rehab after drug rehab listed with a variety of ârecovery claimsâ.
The Blue Ribbon Project is designed to be a community outreach in both the prevention of Child Abuse and a support network for abused and neglected children. At the Blue Ribbon Project, we understand that victims of child abuse carry a burden throughout their lives and the effects of abuse last a lifetime. That’s why we offer a variety of functional outreach programs that directly serve abused and neglected children in our community, youth in foster care, as well as adult survivors of abuse and neglect. Through our dedication to these children, we remain committed to achieving our vision of raising awareness around child abuse in our communities and acting as advocates for those affected by child abuse and neglect. The Blue Ribbon Project is a 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization and our staff is 100% volunteer.
My name is Taylor. I am an adult survivor of child abuse. I founded The Blue Ribbon Project for several reasons and had several goals in mind. First and foremost was to directly assist children within our community who are victims of abuse, neglect, and child sex assault. These children need us to be their voice and to stand up for their safety. It is our obligation to do so. The Blue Ribbon Project achieves this through several outreach programs that work directly with victims of abuse, as well as work with children who are placed within the Foster Care system.
Another goal of The Blue Ribbon Project is to elevate awareness of child abuse and the prevention of abuse and neglect. While there are many resources available and awareness has grown over the last several years, there are a reported 676,569 victims of child abuse and neglect (2011 Child Maltreatment Report, U.S Department of Health and Human Services). This number is staggering...and unacceptable.
The Blue Ribbon Project is a collaboration of survivors, victims, and professionals from various fields. It is this community approach of helping and guiding each other to overcome the obstacles presented to us. While we are all in different parts of our journey, we have something to offer each other in support. The Blue Ribbon Project is developed by you, supported by you, and guided by you. It is YOU who can make a difference in someone's life. The Blue Ribbon Project has grown to become a 501(c)(3) non-profit with programs throughout the state of Maryland.
While we appreciate everyone's support with donations of items as well as full backpacks, we have found that we have an abundance of some items and are completely lacking in others.
We are in dire need of the following items:
We have an abundance of the following items and there is no need (right now) to purchase more:
There are many ways you can help and support our Backpacks of Love program. We can use every little bit of help in creating and filling these backpacks. Here are just a few of the ways a person or organization can help support the project.
Shop for Necessities: While shopping at the grocery store, pick up an essential or two from the list. Even the smallest of items will make it into a backpack and make a world of difference. One does not have to donate an entire backpack, nor does there have to be a large financial donation. Once you have purchased a few items, place them in a bag and drop them off at any of the drop off locations. Please take a look at our What's in a Backpack page to see what necessities are included in backpacks.
Make a donation and have a backpack purchased and filled on your behalf: The average cost of a backpack can run between $30 and $50, however, this cost can fluctuate depending on age and amount of donated items. Please feel free to make a financial donation for us to purchase and fill a backpack on your behalf. On our Donation Page, you will find a comments section. Here, you can specify the age and gender of the pack you would like for us to fill (or leave it up to us based on needs). This is a great option for those that are not local but wish to help as well as those that are too busy (or too far) to shop and drop off a backpack.
Rally your Troops: Organize your business, church group, social group, school, or community organization to assemble backpacks. This is a great project for family based organizations and supporters of children. If you wish, we can come to your organization to speak about the program and present sample backpacks. We have presented the program to several church groups and community associations and we'd be more than happy to speak at yours. This is a great way to get the word out, support the program, and bring attention to the prevention of child abuse.
Make a Financial Contribution: The Blue Ribbon Project is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization. 100% of your donation goes to supporting these children being placed into care and your donation is tax deductible. We are a 100% volunteer organization so there are no paychecks going out. Our space is donated so there is no rent to be paid. There is nothing more frustrating then donating to an organization just to learn that only a small percentage went to the cause you were supporting. If you donate $50.00, that is $50.00 in necessities and backpacks. If you wish to make a financial contribution to support our programs, you can visit our GoFundMe Page. You can also donate by credit card or paypal right here on our website by visiting our Donation Page. The Blue Ribbon Project has applied to be an 501(c)(3) and our status is pending.
Please remember YOU are a part of The Blue Ribbon Project and make these things possible. Please share any ideas and suggestions you may have. We welcome these suggestions.