Parents turn to safe trick-or-treating alternative for Halloween

Childhelp Tennessee serves about 1,500 children in Knox County.
Published: Oct. 28, 2022 at 11:06 PM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Foster mom Amber Quinter always kept a close eye on her little ones, but come Halloween that keen eye gets a little closer.

“I would always check what candy comes into our home, how much they get. Sugar can kind of make kids a little crazy,” Quinter said.

Giving Quinter and her husband some peace of mind this season is Childhelp Tennessee’s first inside trick-or-treating event. Childhelp Tennessee is an agency that fights against child abuse and offers resources to foster families.

Director Vonda Mcgill said providing a safe space for any child, especially ones who come from situations where their safety has not been a priority, was important this Halloween.

“They’ve been through trauma and through maltreatment, and what we want to do is help them tell the story and then have some time to just a kid have some time to feel like I’m just a normal kid,” Mcgill said. “Anytime you have a gathering of children, you’re going to have perpetrators that are lurking around because that’s where they are drawn to. And we talk a lot about stranger danger.”

The Knoxville Police Department handed out their own safety tricks Friday evening. They’re encouraging parents to trick or treat with your kids during daylight; carry a flashlight just in case; try to avoid walking in the street; if you find tampered treats try to find where they came from and report the incident to police; don’t leave your child alone; if you see something say something; stay within your neighborhood or like Quinter attend an community event.

“It was a great resource for us,” said Quinter.

Childhelp Tennessee serves about 1,500 children in Knox County. If you’re worried about your child or any other child’s safety, you can call the agencies 24-hour hotline at (1-800) 4-A-Child.