Every year, thousands of infants are shaken and abused at the hands of a frustrated parent or caregiver. Volunteers and nurses will come together in our area today to knit purple caps to support the prevention of infant abuse.

This first-time, special "Knit In" takes place today at Community Medical Center in Toms River from 11 am - 1 pm in conference room 5F. At least 30 knitters are expected to attend this event, presented by Prevent Child Abuse NJ.

Frustration with a crying infant is the number one trigger for the shaking and abuse of infants. In an effort to educate parents and caregivers about normal infant crying and reduce frustration, the purple baby caps will be made as a reminder to all caregivers to keep babies safe.

This issue hits close to home for many residents and staff in the area. In 2010, a 19 year old Lakewood woman was charged with killing her infant son by shaking him because he wouldn't stop crying. Then in August, 2012, another child was shaken to death by his babysitter. Both children died by something that could have been prevented.

Community Medical Center offers the Period of PURPLE crying program to educate parents, caregivers, and everyone in our community about ways to cope with crying and the dangers of reacting in frustration by shaking or abusing an infant. Each parent who gives birth in November and December at Community Medical Center will receive this information along with a purple cap for their new baby.

If you'd like to get involved in knitting purple newborn caps, you can attend this knit-in (yarn will be provided), call Christine Citera at 732-246-8060, ext. 109 (ccitera@preventchildabusenj.org), or make caps at your home and send them directly to Prevent Child Abuse Headquarters (103 Church St., Suite 201, New Brunswick, NJ 08901.)