top of page

Tackling the Crisis of Sexual Abuse and Human Trafficking

Updated: Jun 13



Keeping Kids Safe

 

With KIdSafe, Center for Child Counseling (CFCC) is tackling a crisis. The state of Florida ranks third in the nation in calls to the National Human Trafficking hotline70 to 90 percent of commercially exploited youth have a history of child sexual abuse. Every nine minutes, a child is a victim of sexual abuse.

 

By centering KidSafe programming, CFCC is taking a proactive approach to addressing the complex issue of child sexual abuse. With support from Impact the Palm Beaches, CFCC has made significant strides in expanding sexual abuse prevention education in Palm Beach County and beyond.

 

CFCC wants every child across the U.S. to be safe from abuse. www.beKidSafe.org  was launched to expand access to education through online training for educators, camp staff, and other professionals. Research-based curricula, including Stay KidSafe!™, CampSafe®, and other workshops provide effective strategies that prevent abuse, build safety and communication skills, promote positive relationships and resilience, and identify risk. Stay KidSafe!™ curriculum is available free of charge and is approved by the School District of Palm Beach County, Florida Department of Education, and most recently, the State of Georgia.

 

CFCC had 74 camps and over 8,000 staff CampSafe® trained, which helped keep over 14,000 campers safe in summer 2023. Staff’s ability to identify a camper who is at risk for child sexual abuse went from 49% confidence to 97% after the training. Over 75% of participants reported feeling safer that their camp is taking action to protect the staff and campers. This year, 105 camps across the nation have already enrolled in the program!

 

In addition to free access to the online, on-demand curriculum for all schools, this year select Palm Beach County District schools received implementation support. At three elementary schools, 24 classrooms and 423 students ages 4-7. were taught the lessons on:

·      Lesson 1 Safety Voice

·      Lesson 2 Stay Close to Your Grown-up

·      Lesson 3 Check First

·      Lesson 4 Circle of Safe Adults

·      Lesson 5 Safe Touch and Unsafe Touch

·      Lesson 6 Good Secrets and Bad Secrets

·      Lesson 7 Intro to Online Safety

·      Lesson 8 Yell NO! Run and Tell

·      Lesson 9 KidSafe Graduation

Additionally, CFCC’s multicultural and multilingual Education and Prevention Services team has been conducting training in local childcare centers, schools, and organizations, ensuring that messages of safety is accessible to all, including those who speak Spanish and Haitian Creole. Through a partnership with Esperanza Community Center and Belvedere Elementary school, the Stay KidSafe!™ curriculum was provided in Spanish. The staff and parents were grateful for the tools and skills to have safety conversations with their children. One of our musically talented specialists put the curriculum to song for younger students, using the ukulele other instruments to make the program even more engaging. Teachers reported hearing students sing these songs after each lesson!

 

At the system level, our CEO has been meeting with with school district leadership to discuss widespread implementation training for counselors throughout the district, to expand on-site support for schools. CFCC’s newest 'A Way of Being with Children' manual, was written so educators and caregivers approach the safety and well-being of elementary-aged children in a trauma-informed way. With over 120 pages of invaluable insights, resources, and activities, this manual will equip frontline educators with the tools they need to foster resilience and safety in classrooms.

 

CFCC is committed to providing relevant and impactful resources and recently revised the beloved 'My Body is Special' book, co-authored by Cherie Benjospeph, LCSW, founder of KidSafe. This update ensures that children have access to age-appropriate and empowering materials to understand and protect their bodies.

 

The true measure of CFCC’s success lies in the stories of empowerment and transformation that unfold every day. Staff and teachers have witnessed firsthand the remarkable changes in children's behavior, as they confidently use KidSafe language to assert boundaries and seek help in potentially unsafe situations.

 

Recently, a 4-year-old child participated in the Stay KidSafe program at a local childcare center, and after just three weeks, the child's parents noticed a remarkable shift in his behavior at home. He began using the simple safety language and skills learned in the program, prompting his parents to inquire about further involvement and training. This example highlights the ripple effect of CFCC’s efforts, empowering not only children but also their families to create safer and more nurturing environments.

 

None of this would be possible without the unwavering support of compassionate individuals like the women of Impact the Palm Beaches. Together, we are creating a safer, more resilient future for our community—one child at a time.

 

For more information, visit: www.centerforchildcounseling.org/kidsafe.

 

20 views0 comments

Comments


bottom of page