Kidpower is Poised to Become a National Leader in Sexual Abuse Prevention
National efforts are encouraging sexual abuse prevention education across the USA. Kidpower Teenpower Fullpower International provides resources for schools to train students, teachers, staff and parents in abuse-prevention and personal-safety skills and strategies.
Kidpower Teenpower Fullpower International is poised to become a national leader in providing abuse-prevention education for families, schools and other youth-serving organizations. Since 1989, Kidpower has served over 4 million people of all ages and abilities through their personal safety workshops, partnerships, and educational resources. With the advent of these new national laws, schools across the country can benefit from Kidpower’s expertise.
After generations of secrecy and suffering, sexual abuse is finally becoming an issue that can be confronted and brought into the light so that victims can get help, and perpetrators are held accountable.
Activists have been fighting on a grassroots level for years and have worked their way up to state and national leaders to pass laws aimed to end abuse. Sexual assault on university campuses has been addressed more thoroughly thanks to a combination of dedicated student activists and top-down actions coming from the Department of Education.
Now there is progress on the pre-K-12 school level. Erin Merryn has led an advocacy effort to pass “Erin’s Law” that would require age-appropriate sexual abuse prevention education for all students and school personnel, as well as information for parents and guardians about the warning signs of sexual abuse and how to get help.
“Erin’s Law” has been passed in 26 states. This state-by-state effort has now been boosted greatly on the federal level with this month’s passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act, which includes provisions championed by Senators Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Dean Heller (R-NV), and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) to enable school districts to use federal grant funding to develop and implement these programs.
With such national momentum for sexual abuse prevention education, school administrations may be wondering who has the expertise to provide this training. Kidpower Teenpower Fullpower International is poised to become a national leader in providing abuse-prevention education for families, schools and other youth-serving organizations. Since 1989, Kidpower has served over 4 million people of all ages and abilities through their personal safety workshops, partnerships, and educational resources. With the advent of these new national laws, schools across the country can benefit from Kidpower’s expertise.
Kidpower founder and executive director Irene van der Zande says, “We have developed a program that is effective and supportive. We never teach from a place of fear, but rather present personal safety as a life skill that empowers kids to explore the world with safety and independence.” The Kidpower curriculum is being developed into forms that can be easily adopted by schools or school districts. Van der Zande says, “We want to teach the whole world, and realize that to do so we need to reach out much more widely. We have developed our programs into books and classroom materials that help teachers share vital abuse-prevention skills with their students. We don’t want to create packages that just sit on the shelf, so we customize offerings for each school, and provide ongoing support to guide schools in implementing the program to their students, staff and families.”
The Kidpower webiste provides a wealth of free resources that families or schools can access to get started. Renowned safety expert Gavin de Becker has endorsed this work, saying “Kidpower has an exceptional track record in the fields of personal safety and violence prevention.”
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