Archive for Children
Guest Blog: The Good Things About Child Day Care
For many parents returning to work after the birth of a child there is a bit of skepticism and doubt towards daycare. This is natural and quite normal, but daycare horror stories and the thought of being separated from your child has more positives, the least of which is stopping you from considering what is really an excellent option for both parent and child. For every day care horror story there are thousands of successes. There are many excellent reasons to send your child to day care, and some are not what you might expect!
Your Child Will Develop Independence
Going to day care can be a discomforting experience for many children and their parents, but after adjusting to this new experience, your child will begin to develop confidence and an independent spirit. Once a child realizes that their new environment is safe, they begin to explore it, consequently learning and experiencing new things. Self esteem begins to develop at a deeper level when a child begins to realize they can handle life without mommy and daddy, at least for awhile!
Day Care Helps to Develop a Child’s Social Skills
By attending day care your child will meet and begin to interact with other children their age, and maybe a bit older and younger. They learn to share, cooperate, communicate, and make new friends. A child being cared for at home by a relative or friend will not have the benefit of such experiences, and consequently when the time comes to attend school, they may be lacking in the social skills needed to adjust. This could lead to the new experience of attending school being a negative one, causing a negative association with learning which could take years to overcome.
Day Care Prepares Your Child for School
A quality day care center with certified teachers and caregivers will help prepare your child for the school environment. This can give your child a huge advantage, giving them a bit of a head start in life. Day care introduces children to new ideas, experiences, rules, and ways to play, at the same time stimulating their powers of thought and reason and introducing them to and familiarizing them with riles and structure. Children who attend day care frequently do better on number-skills and literacy tests than those who don’t, and almost always adjust easier to the school environment.
Having a relative or family friend care for a child in their or your own home can provide a safe and loving atmosphere for your child to develop in, but day care can do the same, and at the same time provide a stimulating learning environment. If you are considering child day care in Richmond Hill, Ontario, you may want to consider centers like the York Enrichment Child Care Center located in the heart of Oak Ridges.
York Enrichment Child Care Center link to: http://www.yeccdaycare.ca/
Nelli Hooper is the proud owner of York Enrichment Childcare Centre located in Richmond Hill, Ontario. Her program has an excellent facility and is setting the standard for childcare within York Region. Please visit her website at http//www.yeccdaycare.ca to learn more about childcare and how it can benefit your child.
Undated booking photos, (not shown here) taken by the national police in The Netherlands and provided by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, show Robert Mikelsons, who was sentenced in Amsterdam on May 21, 2012, to 18 years in prison for abusing dozens of babies and toddlers. A child pornography investigation, which began when a Massachusettsman sent a photo of a young Dutch boy to an undercover federal agent in Boston, led to the arrests of 43 men in seven countries, including Mikelsons, and helped uncover a child pornography network.
DENISE LAVOIE, Associated Press
BOSTON— The men came from different walks of life on two continents: a children’s puppeteer inFlorida, a hotel manager inMassachusetts, an emergency medical technician in Kansas, a day care worker in theNetherlands. In all, 43 men have been arrested over the past two years in a horrific, far-flung child porn network that unraveled like a sweater with a single loose thread.
In this case, the thread was a stuffed toy bunny.
The bunny, seen in a photo of a half-naked, distraught 18-month-old boy, was used to painstakingly trace a molester toAmsterdam. From there, investigators made one arrest after another of men accused of sexually abusing children, exchanging explicit photos of the attacks and even chatting online about abducting, cooking and eating youngsters.
Authorities have identified more than 140 young victims so far and say there is no end in sight as they pore through hundreds of thousands of images found on the suspects’ computers. They are also working to determine whether the men who talked about murder and cannibalism actually committed such acts or were just sharing twisted fantasies.
The still-widening investigation has been code-named Holitna, after a river in Alaskawith many tributaries.
“They are the worst of the worst,” said Bruce Foucart, agent in charge of the U.S. Customs and Immigration Enforcement agency’s Homeland Security Investigations unit inBoston. “This isn’t just a child that’s nude and someone’s taking pictures of him; this is a child that’s being raped by an adult, which is horrific.”
Agents forwarded the photo to Interpol, the international police organization, and to several other countries.
An investigator for the Dutch police recognized the stuffed bunny as Miffy, a familiar character in a series of Dutch children’s books. She also traced the boy’s orange sweater to a small Amsterdam store that had sold only 20 others like it.
The boy’s photo was broadcast on a national TV program similar to “America’s Most Wanted.” Within minutes, friends and relatives called the child’s mother.
Robert Mikelsons, a 27-year-old day care worker who baby-sat the boy, was arrested. On his computer were thousands and thousands of images of children being molested and raped, including the boy holding the stuffed bunny.
Photos and online chats found on computers owned by Diduca and Mikelsons led to more than three dozen other suspects in seven countries, including Canada, Britain, Germany, Sweden and Mexico. The oldest victim in the Netherlands was 4, the youngest just 19 days old.
Massachusetts U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz, whose office prosecuted Diduca, said the demand for photos of sexual assaults of young children, including babies and toddlers, has increased sharply in recent years.
“This demand leads to the abuse of children, yet there is this misconception that somehow, viewing child pornography is a victimless crime,” said. “It clearly is not.”
Diduca pleaded guilty to child porn and sexual exploitation charges and was sentenced to 18 years in prison. His lawyer, Richard Sweeney, said Diduca was sexually abused as a child by a Boy Scout leader. “He gets it, he knows he needs to be punished, he knows what he did is wrong,” Sweeney said.
Mikelsons also received an 18-year sentence, followed by indefinite psychiatric commitment, after confessing to sexually abusing more than 80 children.
The horror did not let up after the Mikelsons case.
In May, authorities arrested Michael Arnett of Roeland Park, Kan., after finding pornographic photos he allegedly produced. Agents discovered the pictures when they searched the computer of a Wisconsin man who had been chatting online with Mikelsons.
What they found on Arnett’s computer was unlike anything some of the investigators had ever come across: long, graphic, online chats about his desire to abduct, kill and eat children. They said he had also made photos of a naked 2-year-old boy in a roasting pan inside his oven. The child and two other boys Arnett allegedly abused and photographed were later identified and found alive.
In July, authorities arrested four men they say had online discussions with Arnett about kidnapping and eating children. Those arrested included Ronald Brown, a children’s puppeteer from Largo,Fla. (A YouTube video shows Brown during an appearance on a Christian TV kids show in the 1980s. In the video, he tells a child puppet that he did the right thing by refusing to look at “dirty pictures” some other youngsters tried to show him.)
In excerpts of an online chat between Arnett and Brown from 2011, the two men appear to be discussing their desire to cook a child for Easter.
“he would make a fine Easter feast,” Arnett says.
“yes, his thighs and butt cheeks would be fantastic for Easter,” Brown responds.
A lawyer for Arnett would not comment on the allegations. Brown’s lawyer did not return calls.
Prosecutors said Brown acknowledged his online conversations but said that it was all a fantasy and that he would never hurt anyone.
“Obviously the discussions regarding their claims of cannibalism are disturbing and a concern to our agency,” said ICE spokesman Ross Feinstein. He said agents are following all leads “to make sure these individuals didn’t follow through on any of their claims.”
To find the young victims, investigators carefully studied thousands of photos, read hours of Internet chats and worked with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. They also employed some forensic wizardry.
After finding a video on Diduca’s computer of a bound, 2-year-old boy being raped, investigators enhanced the images of furniture and carpet and determined the attack took place in a motel room in Bakersfield,Calif.
Then they pinpointed the date by way of a TV that was playing in the background in the video, figuring out exactly when a particular episode of “Family Matters” aired along with a certain Pepperidge Farms commercial.
A man from Black Forest, Colo., was arrested and is awaiting trial.
Similarly, in the Arnett case, investigators discovered that a water bottle in one of the photographs carried the name of a swim and scuba center in Overland Park, Kan. With the help of teachers at an elementary school, they identified three children shown in the photographs, including the toddler posed in the roasting pan.
The mother of one of the boys said she initially did not believe the allegations against Arnett, a family friend for about 15 years. She said her son, now 7, and several nephews often spent weekends at Arnett’s home four or five years ago.
“Well, when we first got the phone call, we thought there’s no way. You guys got the wrong guy,” she said. The Associated Press does not identify victims of sexual abuse or their families.
But then investigators showed her photos Arnett had allegedly taken of her son with a shirt and no pants.
“Regret? For sending my son with a sick-minded guy, that’s the only regret I have. I had no idea,” she said. “It’s depressing.”
For the agents working on the case, the leads never seem to end.
Last week, they arrested another Massachusetts man after finding child pornography and photos of what appeared to be dead children on his computer. He allegedly had online chats with Arnett and Brown.
More arrests are expected.
“The agents that work for me are extremely driven on this type of investigation,” said Bart Cahill, assistant agent in charge of Homeland Security Investigations inBoston. “They really believe that they are taking out horrific violators and saving kids.”
Associated Press writers Maria Sudekum inKansas City,Mo., and Matt Sedensky inWest Palm Beach,Fla., contributed to this report.