By Ginny Sagal, Communication & Outreach Coordinator for the Children’s Advocacy Center of Jackson County

You can’t read a newspaper or turn on a television without hearing about child sexual abuse.

Do not feel helpless.

There is one thing you can do that matters in addressing child sexual abuse.  You can take a child abuse prevention training through the Children’s Advocacy Center Protect Our Children Project.  

When I read and hear these horrible stories, I think how wonderful it would be if all parents and caregivers knew how to recognize and respond to child sexual abuse.

The Protect Our Children training guides you through 5 steps to protecting children from sexual abuse.

The 5 Steps are:

  1. Learn the Facts: 1 in 10 children are sexually abused before the age of 18. Over 90% of them know their abuser. There is no more of this stranger danger thing. We need to go beyond that.
  2. Minimize the Opportunity: Decrease the risk of abuse by eliminating one on one situations.
  3. Talk About It: Have age appropriate, open conversations about our bodies, sex and boundaries. I think of the gymnast kids who were abused by their doctor or coach that the families had trusted.
  4. Recognize the signs: Why is this person giving gifts to my child? Why is this person always with the kids when he or she should be with the adults when we are at a party?
  5. React Responsibly: How you reacts matters. Go with your gut feeling!

The Protect Our Children Project uses the Stewards of Children curriculum, developed by Darkness to Light.

We believe that when adults take the class they recognized that it is all our responsibility to protect children.

We believe that adults who take the class decrease the risk of the children in their life being sexually abused.

The fact is that 99% of participants who take the training would recommend this training to a friend, family member or co-worker. (Study done by the University of Oregon Center for Prevention of Abuse and Neglect.)

The Children’s Advocacy Center of Jackson County has partnered with The Ford Family Foundation to offer this training to anyone in Jackson County for FREE.

Just think, in 2 to 3 short hours you can decrease the risk that a child in your life will be sexually abused. THAT IS BIG!!!

Do one thing that Matters for the kids and teens in your life. Take a Protect our Children training.

To register for a training for yourself or your group, business or organization go to:  or call Leah Howell, Protect Our Children Training Coordinator, at 541-734-5437 ext. 1013

Ginny Sagal