Protect the Child: A How-to Guide

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Accept that someone you work with could molest a child. Develop written rules and make sure everyone sticks to them. If a child is abused, counsel rather than fight with the family.

These are among the common guidelines of child protection plans in youth-serving organizations – and they illustrate a significant change not just in rules, but in a way of thinking.

The youth field has come a long way in recent years in confronting sexual misconduct among adults and youth in their programs. “More programs are putting into place really strong prevention steps,” said Sarah Kremer, who leads mentor screening and youth safety training as program director of the Mentoring Institute.

“Anybody who does capacity building and training in mentoring is spending a lot of time on screening and child protection,” says David Shapiro, CEO of MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership. 

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