Hoping for happy childhoods: Hancock4Kids promotes positive parenting, community events


The annual Superhero 5K and Kids’ Dash promotes awareness and raises funds for Hancock4Kids. This year’s event is June 18.

Submitted photo

Editor’s note: The Daily Reporter features our “Neighbors” often, whether it be someone with an interesting hobby or profession, or a nonprofit group making a difference in our community. Here, Diane Burklow tells us about Hancock4Kids, an organization that has several activities coming up this summer. If you know a person or a group that you’d like to see featured in Neighbors, email [email protected]

Daily Reporter: Tell us about Hancock4Kids.

Diane Burklow: Hancock4Kids mission is to provide positive parenting education and raise awareness of child abuse prevention through activities that teach, strengthen, empower, and assist families and the community so that children may grow up in safe and nurturing homes.

DR: How did it begin?

DB: July 23, 2015, many individuals and agencies joined together as Prevent Child Abuse Hancock County. We changed our name later to Hancock4Kids Inc, and in March 2020, attained our 501c3 status. We are a chartered member of Prevent Child Abuse Indiana.

What is your group’s annual budget and how many people are involved?

DB: $23,000. Co-directors are Mikel Theobald and Diane Burklow; Secretary Misty Fuller; Treasurer Brenda Wilkinson; Volunteer Coordinator Rebekah Steele. We have 30 collaborative Hancock County agencies and many individuals currently represented on our council as volunteers.

DR: What’s your group’s biggest challenge?

DB: Our biggest challenge at this time is our continued growth and the need for volunteers. Those willing to help set up and be active in our events throughout the year. We would love to have more businesses in the community sponsor our family events, give in-kind donations, or just lend a hand.

We need and want people who can set up tents and tables, hand out flyers, advocate for children, plant pinwheels in April, hand out school supplies and backpacks at our Summer Series, give of their knowledge and experience, shop with a child at the holidays with our Clothe-a-Child, Feed-a-Family program, and just may like to dress up as superheroes at our Superhero 5K fundraiser each summer (though not a prerequisite, but so much fun). And smiles, smiles are great.

DR: What are your primary events?

DB: April Prevention of Child Abuse month pinwheel planting and child abuse awareness and prevention activities; Positive Parenting Classes four times a year to teach and support parents and caregivers, Family Fun Summer Series in Riley Park, and our annual fundraiser, Superhero 5K and Kids’ Dash Fun Run on the Saturday of Father’s Day weekend. We also help families during the holiday season with our Clothe-a-Child, Feed-a-Family program.

DR: How can someone step up to help?

DB: Anyone can step up to help and will just need a background check. Email [email protected] to ask how to volunteer.

To contribute financially, you may send a check to P.O. Box 512 New Palestine, In 46163 or go to www.hancock4kids.org and donate electronically.

DR: How can people learn more?

DB: Our vision is for all children to have happy childhoods. Please connect with us to make this happen in our community. Connect on Facebook, @hancockcountychildren; Instagram, @hancock4kids. Email [email protected] or call (317) 468-8525. For more on Prevent Child Abuse Indiana, visit pcain.org.