YMCA's Darkness to Light Program
We have a very special post today from the YMCA in Carrboro/Chapel Hill. This community resource is currently working on a very serious issue and trying to make a huge impact in our neighborhoods for our children. We want to take a moment to use our blog space to highlight these efforts and encourage you to participate. Keep reading below.:
April is Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Month. Did you know it is statistically proven that 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys is sexually abused before their 18th birthday? What's scarier is that in 90% of these cases the abuser is someone the child or family knows and trusts. While these numbers are certainly alarming, the Chapel Hill/Carrboro YMCA is offering adults an opportunity to join the prevention movement to help change these statistics for future generations. There are many ways in which you can help.
The Y’s Darkness to Light ("D2L") initiative focuses on each adult’s responsibility in helping to protect the children in our community. And the Stewards of Children Training (which hails from national non-profit Darkness to Light) trains adults to prevent, recognize, and react responsibly to child sexual abuse ("CSA"). "Stewards" is an empowering, evidence-based training presented from the perspective of adult CSA survivors and the Y brings this training to you. For free.
In these trainings participants learn how to talk to children about personal privacy and boundaries, how to encourage child-protective policies within organizations, and how to respond if a child discloses information to you. Through grant funding the YMCA is currently able to offer this 3-hour training for free and is reaching out to parents, PTAs, daycares, faith communities, and other organizations that impact the lives of children. The more adults that are trained to recognize warning signs of CSA and are prepared to help children navigate this issue, the safer all of our children will be.
Currently the YMCA has a goal to train 5% of the adult population in Orange, Chatham, and Durham counties, which is the number needed to be a tipping point causing a cultural shift to occur. Because children are involved in so many activities and interact with so many people on a daily basis, it is crucial to spread awareness and prevention knowledge surrounding CSA throughout the entire community. Of course, ultimately the Y’s goal is to create a culture and environment where CSA is not tolerated or enabled through silence and where children are empowered to reach their full potential.
Trainings will be offered throughout the month and restaurants will participate in Join the Movement Mondays, donating portions of their profits to the initiative which allows the trainings to remain free for a longer period of time. Below is the calendar of events for the month of April (please note that dates are current for the time of this publication in March 2012).
To register for a free training email D2L@chcymca.org. The YMCA will also lead private D2L trainings organizations, neighborhood associations, or friend groups. To arrange these email D2L@chcymca.org.
For more information, check out the local initiative’s website at http://www.chcymca.org/d2l/. To participate in "Join the Movement Mondays" all you have to do is dine at the restaurants on the specific Monday listed below and tell them you are supporting Darkness to Light.
Join the Movement Monday -
remember to tell the restaurant you are there for the Darkness to Light Initiative
Mon, Apr. 2, All Day- Red Bowl in University Mall (dine in or takeout)
Mon, Apr. 9, 5-8pm- Qdoba on Franklin Street
Mon, Apr. 16, All Day- Red Bowl in University Mall (dine in or takeout)
Mon, Apr. 23, 4-11pm- Sweet Frog on Franklin Street
Mon, Apr. 30, 5-7pm- Chick-fil-A in University Mall (special green milkshakes and a prize wheel)
Stewards of Children Training-
email D2L@chcymca.org to register
Wed, Apr. 4, 4:30-7pm- UNC Campus Health Building, Room 233
Thurs, Apr. 12, 9am-12pm- YMCA Children’s Center at Carol Woods
Sat, Apr. 14, 9am-12pm- United Church of Chapel Hill
Sat, Apr. 21, 9am-12pm- Seymour Senior Center
Tues, Apr. 24, 5:45-8:45pm- YMCA Children’s Center at Carol Woods
Healthy Kids Day at the YMCA-
Come enjoy an afternoon of family fun at the Y! D2L will be at the event with information about our community initiative to end child sexual abuse. Stop by to learn more about D2L and participate in fun activities for the kids!
Sun, Apr. 1, 1-5pm- Camp Royal in Pittsboro
Sat, Apr. 28, 1-4pm- Chapel Hill-Carrboro YMCA
Prevent Now! Community Awareness Meeting-
Tues, Apr. 17, 12:00-1:30pm- YMCA Children’s Center at Carol Woods
‘Because Parents Matter’ Summit-
Parents, learn how you can tackle some of the most pressing health and safety issues facing teens today at this event, sponsored by the Orange County Sexual Violence Prevention Task Force. D2L will host a workshop on how to prevent child sexual abuse in our community. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
Sat, Apr. 21, 9:30am-1:00pm- El Centro Hispano in Carrboro