23 July 2013

By David S. Lee, MPH

We have learned a lot about the problem of child sexual abuse as seen in newspaper headlines. And we need to learn more about the solutions to preventing child sexual abuse. One important piece of the solution is to focus on the power of prevention. Preventing child sexual violence requires the involvement of many people and organizations engaged in the lives of children: educational institutions, youth development organizations, after school programs, parent associations and faith communities.

As Linda Crockett of Samaritan Counseling Center’s Safe Church Project said during last week’s Ending Child Sexual Abuse Web Conference Faith Communities Engaged in Ending Child Sexual Abuse, “Faith communities have a vital role… Faith communities need to be part of the movement to push the wider culture.” Victor Vieth of the National Child Protection Training Center described how “faith has a critical role in the lives of abused children.”

There are many actions that faith communities can take to be active in ending child sexual abuse. Faith communities can develop child sexual abuse prevention policies, integrate prevention education into religious school curriculum, develop partnerships with child sexual abuse prevention organizations and discuss child sexual abuse prevention from the pulpit.

This web conference kicked off the second Ending Child Sexual Abuse Web Conference series sponsored by PreventConnect and the Ms. Foundation for Women. The theme of this series is “Power In Prevention.” The web conferences are hosted by PreventConnect’s Leona Smith-DiFaustino and led by child sexual abuse prevention experts Cordelia Anderson and Joan Tabachnick.

Click here for more information about this series and sign up here for announcements for future web conferences.

David S. Lee, MPH, is the Director of Prevention Services at the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault, where he provides training and technical assistance on prevention. 

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for highlighting sexual abuse prevention education for children. It is key! And can mean the difference between of life of possibilities and a life of ongoing trauma. As the author of the children's book Some Secrets Should Never Be Kept, I too, am an advocate for prevention education and I applaud this initiative.