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As a provider of sports programming for youth, your organization can play a critical role in protecting the lives of young athletes. You can help put an end to child sexual abuse by implementing a comprehensive child protection program and training your coaching staff and volunteers. Ask any organization that has experienced a case of sexual abuse and they will tell you that knowing what they know now, there is NO amount of time that would have been too great to spend on prevention and educating their staff and volunteers.
As a youth sports organization you have the opportunity to set a new standard within the sports community. Make the commitment for the long term well being of your organization and for the precious children in your care. You can be a leader to your local community as well as a leader among other sports organizations by setting a higher standard and showing that you will do whatever it takes to keep children safe when they are with you.
A Youth Sports Organization in Action
Alongside the Cascade Mountains lies Bend, Oregon, a community dedicated to protecting its children against sexual abuse. Thousands of adults in Bend have taken Stewards of Children training, including those on the of child care at The Bend Parks and Recreation Center. A staple in the community, Bend Parks and Recreation provides countless youth enrichment services and proudly supports Kids, Inc., an after school program for elementary aged children.
Each year, the leadership team at Kids, Inc. works alongside expert Facilitators from The KIDS Center to ensure top of the line child safety measures are in place. As part of Kids, Inc.’s protection policy, Stewards of Children training is provided to new volunteers, staff and coaches. Staff members are able to apply Darkness to Light’s "5 Steps" to their daily routine. They have learned ways to minimize isolated, one-on-one situations, possible signs and symptoms of sexual abuse and reporting procedures for cases of suspected abuse for children in their care. Kids, Inc.’s commitment to prevention is better protecting thousands of children in Bend and helping them grow up happy and whole.
Tips for Youth Sports Organizations