According to experts, one in 10 children will experience child sexual abuse before their 18th birthday. In an effort to rid the world of child sexual abuse, the YMCA of Burlington and Camden Counties, with the New Jersey YMCA State Alliance, has joined forces with Darkness to Light, a nationally recognized nonprofit organization and creators of the award-winning Stewards of Children child sexual abuse prevention curriculum to educate adults in the community on how to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to child sexual abuse.
Through the initiative, the YMCA of Burlington and Camden Counties is offering a Stewards of Children child sexual abuse prevention training, open to adults in the community on Thursday, April 10 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Mt. Laurel YMCA.
The two-hour, evidence-based program is designed to increase knowledge, improve attitudes and change child protective behaviors. Darkness to Light training covers a five-step action plan .
1. Learn the facts. One in 10 children are sexually abused. Over 90 percent know their abuser)
2. Minimize opportunity. Eliminate or reduce isolated, one-on-one situations to decrease risk for abuse.
3. Talk about it. Have open conversations with children about our bodies, sex and boundaries.
4. Recognize the signs. Know the signs of abuse to protect children from further harm.
5. React responsibly. Understand how to respond to suspicions or reports of sexual abuse.
Recently, acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman announced that all New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety employees will now receive mandatory child sexual abuse identification and prevention training through Darkness to Light as a proactive approach to eradicating the crime.
For those unable to attend this training, a free online training option is also available for New Jersey residents through June 1.
Cost for participation in Stewards of Children child sexual abuse prevention training is $10 per person. Continuing education credits for professionals in various fields can be obtained through the in-person and online versions of this training.
To help the YMCA of Burlington and Camden Counties end child sexual abuse or for more about Stewards of Children workshops, contact Dana Collins at (856) 231–9622 ext. 227 or firstname.lastname@example.org.