AUGUSTA — Maine Children’s Trust seeks Maine citizens to join The Front Porch Project of Maine.

The trust has partnered with the network of prevention councils in every Maine county to deliver training directly to the community to encourage community members to become committed and engaged in protecting children and supporting families in their community.

The Front Porch Project is based on the belief that everyone can and should become more aware of how to help protect children and support families in their own community. It provides community members with the knowledge, skills and encouragement they need to take an active role in preventing abuse and neglect before it occurs.

The Front Porch Project is flexible, free, available through online platforms, and can be adapted to meet the needs of a specific community, according to a news release.

“We want to raise awareness on the local level about the family stressors that can lead to child abuse and neglect,” said Pam LaHaye, executive director, according to a news release from the trust. “But beyond that, we want to stress that most child abuse can be prevented. With education, support and training, community members can help prevent abuse and neglect before it occurs.”

LaHaye said the Front Porch Project facilitates supportive discussions and interactive activities to help community members navigate difficult situations involving children and families. “The goal of the Front Porch Project is simple — engage and train the community to help protect children, support families and prevent abuse and neglect,” said LaHaye.

The Front Porch Project is a community response initiative, funded in part by donations to the Maine Children’s Trust on behalf of Marissa Kennedy, a child tragically lost to child abuse. For more information on how to get involved, visit frontporchmaine.org.