Provided by SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now) of Northern Virginia
Four individuals and one local organization were honored at SCAN’s 14th Annual Allies in Prevention Awards luncheon for their work to change the lives of children, parents and families in Northern Virginia. ABC7’s Leon Harris, a SCAN Honorary Board member, presented the awards with SCAN Executive Director Sonia Quinonez and Keynote Speaker Dr. Avidan Milevsky.
Prince William resident Carlos Castro was among the individuals honored.
Carlos Castro’s story as an entrepreneur and community leader has been covered by everyone from USA Today to The Washington Post to NPR. But it is his connection with and commitment to the youth in his community, notes his nominator, that makes his vision and impact on abuse prevention so remarkable. A successful businessman who immigrated to the U.S. from El Salvador in 1980, Carlos has been a passionate advocate for immigrants ever since, serving as a critical bridge between the Hispanic community and greater Prince William. “When he speaks,” notes his nominator, “both sides listen…he is always respected.” When Carlos sees opportunities to empower children and young adults in his community, he takes the initiative to make things happen. He employs students on probation, mentors boys at risk of gang participation and provides his grocery store employees with opportunities to learn how they can take action to recognize and prevent things like human trafficking and children being left alone in cars. Carlos is a father of four and has served on the PTO of his children’s schools, as well as HOLA and the Potomac Health Foundation. He serves as an unrivaled role model in our community, giving a voice to and empowering the youth he sees as the future of the community.
Stop Child Abuse Now (SCAN) of Northern Virginia is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote the well-being of children, improve parent-child relations and prevent child abuse and neglect. Our vision is that every child in Northern Virginia will grow up in a safe, stable, nurturing family, with the supports they need to contribute to stronger communities today and as adults tomorrow. We EDUCATE the community about the scope, nature and consequences of child abuse and neglect and the importance of positive, nurturing parenting; PROVIDE direct parent education; and ADVOCATE for children in the community, the legislature and the courts. Learn more about SCAN at scanva.org.