Frequently Asked Questions

Pennsylvania Family Support Alliance is a statewide child abuse prevention organization. To find out more about PFSA, our mission and organizational structure, go to the PFSA FAQ page.

PFSA has been strengthening families in Pennsylvania for more than 30 years and is a vital community partner in the prevention, intervention, reporting and treatment of child abuse. Our services are designed to help families build a positive environment for children through parenting skills education, support services for families, and training programs for professionals.

In recognition of our success and expertise in the field of child abuse prevention, PFSA was selected by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services to create a Mandated Reporter training curriculum for education, childcare, religious and community service professionals. We have since become a leading training resource for professionals responsible for making reports to Child Protective Services. We have also become a leading advocate for much-needed changes to our state’s Child Protective Services Law, particularly in the area of reporting and training requirements for professionals and community volunteers who interact with children.

PFSA is led by its President/CEO, a team of specialists and support staff and a statewide board with broad-based representation from child services, the legal community, healthcare, human services, higher education and business. We are a nonprofit organization and our operations are funded through a combination of grants, contracts, program services and affiliation fees.

Yes. In 2013, over 26,900 reports of suspected child abuse were received by ChildLine, the state’s hotline for reporting suspected abuse. This was an increase of 280 reports from 2012. Over 3,400 of these reports were substantiated (found that abuse had occurred). Each of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties received reports of abuse and 33 counties received more reports of child abuse in 2013 than in 2012.

Approximately 10 out of every 1,000 children in Pennsylvania were reported as victims of child abuse, and approximately 1 out of every 1,000 children were found to be victims of child abuse.

Sadly, 38 children died as a result of child abuse in 2013. Each year, Pennsylvania loses the equivalent of one classroom of children because of abuse. You can find many more statistics about child abuse in Pennsylvania in the Department of Public Welfare Annual Report.

If you have a reasonable cause to suspect that a child is being abused, contact ChildLine at 1-800-932-0313. You do not have to be sure that abuse is happening and you should not try to investigate what happened on your own. You may make the report anonymously.

Some groups of people are mandated to report child abuse, based on their contact with children in the course of employment or other factors. If you are not sure if you are a mandated reporter, click here to find out about your responsibilities and how PFSA can help you recognize and report child abuse.

Learn more about reporting child abuse here.

It's easy to order our parenting brochures, “Building Your Family” curriculum and resources for mandated reporters. Affiliates should select Account Login and provide the assigned username and password in order to access special pricing in our online store. You can also call our office at 1-800-448-4906 for information. We accept checks and credit cards. Purchase orders are required for any materials requiring an invoice. All sales are final. Click here to go to our Online Store.

We customize our services to meet the needs of the affiliated organization; these organizations then provide Family Support Programs in their communities. Here are some services that our affiliates enjoy:

  • Current information on issues facing the child welfare and abuse prevention community; an organized presence in state government to educate legislators about the needs of the families they serve.
  • Organization of special events and awareness campaigns, like the Blue Ribbon campaign for Child Abuse Prevention Month.
  • A video lending library and book lending library of more than 100 titles each are available to supplement the local Family Support Program meetings and enhance learning.
  • When parents are looking for help, they can access a local group by calling the state office toll-free number, where we will refer them to the program.
  • Training to increase the skills of staff as group facilitators; this is provided near your office at no charge. Training for childcare staff ensures the best possible program for the whole family. Plus, special sessions of our acclaimed training for mandated reporters are scheduled “for affiliates only.”
  • Technical assistance and a variety of marketing materials to help local programs recruit new families. Monthly mailings provide meeting ideas, legislative alerts, and other resources to make the job easier.
  • High quality publications – like the "Parenting Primers" and our parenting series on special topics, such as parents in recovery and parents with mental illness – at reduced cost to the affiliated agency.

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