To Report Abuse Call
1.800.96.ABUSE (22873)

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20th Annual Community Harvest

Mary Lee's House is honored to be a recipient for The Columbia Restaurant Group's 20th annual Community Harvest. Dine at any of the three Tampa locations in September and select Mary Lee's House on your Community Harvest ballot. The Columbia will then donate 5% of the check to Mary Lee's House.

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2017 Mandatory Reporter Training

Mary Lee’s House sponsored its annual Mandatory Reporter Training, presented by the Department of Children and Families Abuse Hotline, on April 11th and 12th at Stetson University Tampa Law Center. This event continues to be one of the largest trainings of its kind on the issue of mandated child abuse reporting in Florida.

The trainings are provided to educate and raise awareness of Florida’s abuse reporting laws, which are one of the nation’s toughest. Previous consequences for those who did not report abuse included a first degree misdemeanor. With the current laws, those who fail to report abuse in Florida now face a third degree felony charge punishable by up to 5 years in prison and up to a $5,000 fine. Schools and universities can be fined up to $1 million for failure to report.

The trainings are also intended to educate the local community on reporting abuse, as any person who knows or suspects that a child has been abused is considered a mandated reporter and required to report to the Abuse Hotline. The trainings help provide not only the steps to report abuse, but key signs to be aware of in a potential abuse situation.

Approximately 480 attended the Mandatory Reporter Trainings this year. Attendees included social workers, school counselors, foster parents, Guardian Ad Litems, daycare employees, as well as community advocates from Hillsborough, Pinellas, and Pasco counties.

For more information on Mary Lee’s House, click here. For more information on the Florida Department of Children and Families Abuse Hotline, please visit https://reportabuse.dcf.state.fl.us/.

To report abuse, please call 1-800-96-ABUSE (1-800-962-2873).

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month

Each year in April, the President of the United States issues a proclamation to announce National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and the State of Florida participates in this campaign by promoting community involvement through State and local activities.  We can all play a role in preventing child abuse and neglect and promoting child and family well-being. 

Here are just a few ways to get involved:

Wear BLUE – The color blue is the shade for Child Abuse Prevention.  Please support the cause and join all of us at Mary Lee’s House by wearing blue on April 7th.

Plant a Pinwheel – Pinwheels are the symbol for Child Abuse Prevention. Place a pinwheel in your yard, on your desk, or as your social media profile and show that you are committed to preventing Child Abuse in our community.  Pinwheels are available at Mary Lee’s House for anyone interested!

Attend A Training – There are several educational opportunities available at Mary Lee’s House, which are a great way to gain knowledge and become an advocate.  The Children’s Advocacy Center at Mary Lee’s House offers Darkness to Light’s Stewards of Children training, a nationally recognized training for adults on the prevention of child sexual abuse. This educational event is significant for any person who has a child in their life – whether as a teacher, parent or caregiver, athletic coach, or volunteer. View upcoming trainings here. Mary Lee’s House is also excited to sponsor a Mandatory Reporter Training by the Department of Children and Families Abuse Hotline team. Florida is a mandatory reporter state, meaning that anyone who has knowledge of or a reasonable suspicion of abuse is required to report by contacting the Abuse Hotline at 1-800-96-ABUSE. For more information on these trainings, and how to report abuse, please click here.

Talk About It – Unfortunately, Child Abuse happens everyday in our community. By talking about it, we help others become aware and ask questions. It is through these conversations that we increase awareness and therefore prevention.

2017 Celebrity Golf Classic

Mary Lee’s House celebrated its 6th annual Celebrity Golf Classic on Monday, February 27th at Avila Golf & Country Club. Gorgeous weather, a beautiful course, generous supporters, celebrities and volunteers made for an outstanding event!

Over $350,000 was raised to support Hillsborough County’s Child Advocacy and Protection center. The funds collected at this annual event enable Mary Lee’s House to continue to provide a warm, child-friendly environment for victims of abuse and neglect and their families, as well as ensure the co-location of the five partner agencies focusing on child abuse prevention and treatment.

The day began with a welcome reception complete with a bloody mary bar, hot buffet lunch and cigar rollers. Golfers spent time on the practice green before a prayer led by Kathy Connor, Mary Lee’s House Board member and Pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Tampa. Mary Lee’s House Board Chairman, Rex Farrior spoke on the generosity of the local community and supporters such as those attending the tournament, who are the reason Mary Lee’s House was able to open in 2008 and who are vital to our continuance in Hillsborough County. Executive Director Kim Miller shared that it is because of our community’s support that Mary Lee’s House can provide a loving place for abused and neglected children to begin their healing.

The theme of this year’s tournament was Brews, Blues and Brats, featuring craft beers and snacks at tents stationed around the course. Games included a $10,000 putting contest, hole in one and closest to the pin. The event concluded with a BBQ style hot buffet, live music and tournament prizes ranging from craft beer sets to Yeti coolers. A few lucky raffle winners also walked away with a Tiffany bracelet, Yankee Spring Season box seats, a signed Tampa Bay Lightning Hockey stick, Tampa Bay Lightning Club seats and a range finder.

Columbia Community Harvest

The Columbia Restaurant group is hosting its 19th annual Community Harvest and Mary Lee's House is honored to be one of the organizations chosen as a recipient for donations. Dine at any of the three Tampa locations in September and select Mary Lee's House on your Community Harvest ballot. The Columbia will then donate 5% of the check to Mary Lee's House.

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Every child deserves a safe haven. Join us in the fight against child abuse and the care of its innocent victims.

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