J. Gregory Hatcher | Child Custody Attorney
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. There is no better example of how a community can come together to stop abuse than the Kilah Davenport Foundation. Kilah Davenport was brutally attacked by her stepfather while she was left in his care several years ago. Miraculously, little Kilah survived the attack. Although she survived, she suffered significant injuries which changed her life and the lives of those who knew her forever. Although Kilah eventually died from the injuries caused by her attacker, her memory and spirit have inspired the creation of the Kilah Davenport Foundation.
The Kilah Davenport Foundation was organized by Kilah’s grandmother and grandfather, Leslie and Brian Davenport, in November of 2012. The goal of the Foundation is to provide educational services for the families and victims of child abuse, as well as to encourage and motivate the lawmakers throughout the United States to impose greater penalties in cases of child abuse.
Unlike many other well-intentioned charitable organizations, the Kilah Davenport Foundation has been successful early and often since its creation. The Foundation has been able to obtain the backing of local and state lawmakers in North Carolina to change the penalties and jail time for child abuse perpetrators. Further, the Foundation has gained the attention of national lawmakers. Because of the Kilah Davenport Foundation’s efforts there is a federal emphasis across the United States for each state to review and evaluate its current laws relative to child abuse with an eye toward increasing those penalties.
Although the Foundation realizes that child abuse might not ever end, its efforts to provide awareness of this problem here in the United States, to provide relief and inspiration to other victims and to guarantee swift and heavy punishment to the attackers is an exceptional model of what can happen in this country when concerned citizens band together for a common goal. I am proud to be on the board of the Kilah Davenport Foundation with the work that is being accomplished.
To learn more about the Kilah Davenport Foundation, visit their website at www.kilahdavenportfoundation.com.
For more resources on child abuse prevention and children’s rights, visit the websites listed below.
Greg Hatcher is a child custody lawyer in Charlotte, NC. Before joining the Kilah Davenport Foundation’s board of directors, he served as the executive committee chair for the Men For Change Breakfast, a fundraising and awareness event benefiting Safe Alliance and victims of domestic violence.