PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — April is Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Month and a group of advocates in our area is spreading the word that they’re here to help.
The group is called BACA, which stands for Bikers Against Child Abuse.
10 On Your Side caught up with them earlier this month to talk about their outreach programs, their work with the Newport News Commonwealth Attorney’s Office, and how they help victims of abuse.
Next week, the organization is hosting a community presentation. The goal is to let other advocates know what they do and how they help.
“It’s an opportunity for the community to come together, to hear a full presentation on BACA’s mission… what we do, what we don’t do and for these agencies to be able to vet us and ask questions,” said BabyGirl, the secretary and child liaison for the Seven Cities Chapter of BACA. “We’re not just a biker group who wants to end child abuse, there’s much more to it than that, so we want people to know how we do what do and who we serve.”
Chrissy Bellino, who is a senior victim advocate in the Newport News Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office, told 10 On Your Side earlier this month, “When the traditional therapists and advocates aren’t in the office, BACA is there to go and support these kids and to meet with them whenever they need it.”
The presentation is Tuesday evening at Christ Fellowship Church, located at 2925 Victory Boulevard in Portsmouth. It starts at 6:30 p.m. RSVP is requested, but not required. To RSVP, email info@sc_va.bacaworld.org or call 757-276-9057. The presentation is not suitable for children, as sensitive topics may be discussed.
For the rest of the month, BACA members will be out and about at Starbucks locations across the seven cities, sharing what they do and hoping to help as many kids as they can. They’re also collecting denim vests and teddy bears to give to BACA children.
Their chapter helpline is 757-276-9057.
Here is where they will be during the rest of April:
- Saturday, 4/23: Kempsriver: 1390 Fordham Dr VA Beach, VA 23464
- Sunday, 4/24: Eden Way: 809 Eden Way N Chesapeake, VA 23320
- Saturday, 4/30: Princess Anne: 2005 Lynnhaven Pkwy VA Beach, VA 23456
All month long, teddy bears and jean jackets may be dropped off at the following Starbucks locations:
- Hanbury: 249 Hanbury Rd E Chesapeake, VA 23322
- Country Club: 940 Cedar Rd Chesapeake, VA 23322
- Battlefield: 1217 N. Battlefield Blvd Chesapeake, VA 23320
- Woodlake: 1746 Sentinel Dr Chesapeake, VA 23320
- Eden Way: 809 Eden Way N Chesapeake, VA 23320
- Kempsriver: 1390 Fordham Dr VA Beach, VA 23464 Providence: 5232
- Providence Rd VA Beach, VA 23464
- Princess Anne: 2005 Lynnhaven Pkwy VA Beach, VA 23456
- Landstown Commons: 3376 Princess Anne Rd VA Beach, VA 23456
- Landstown Center: 1933 Landstown Center Way VA Beach, VA 23456
- Holland: 3917 Holland Rd VA Beach, VA 23452
BACA also has a 100 Mile Ride fundraiser on Saturday, May 21, 2022. It starts at ends at Bayside Harley in Portsmouth. Registration begins at 10 a.m., and kickstands up at 11 a.m. It is $20 for a single rider and $25 for double.