Stewards of Children

Preventing Child Sexual Abuse

YMCAs in New Jersey have a vision of a world free of child sexual abuse.  A world in which all children are loved, protected, nurtured and able to grow up healthy.

Darkness to Light, a nationally recognized authority on the issue of child sexual abuse prevention and creator of the award-winning Stewards of Children curriculum has partnered with the New Jersey YMCA State Alliance to inform, educate and mobilize advocates for children. 

Did You Know?

  • 42 million adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse are walking among us.*

  • In 90% of cases, the child knows the abuser.*

  • Children are the victims of 70% of all reported sexual assaults.*

  • 40% of sexually abused children are abused by an older or larger child.*

  • One survey showed only 30% of parents take proactive steps to protect their children.*

  • 5% of a community trained to be aware and responsive is the tipping point to make a positive change.*

Find a Stewards of Children Training

Find a Faciliator near you  

Prevention is the Answer

The YMCA has partnered with Darkness to Light to bring the Stewards of Children child sexual abuse prevention training to our communities. Stewards of Childrenis the only evidence-based training available nationally that is proven to increase knowledge and change child protective behavior.

The YMCAs in New Jersey have set a goal to train 5% of the adults in our community by the year 2017.  This 5% goal represents what the research tells us is the critical point for positive change in a community. 

The Y is working with community partners including local civic and volunteer groups, non-profits, faith-based groups, businesses, school districts and local government to keep children safe.  When adults actively seek to make a difference, a cultural change can occur. We’re working to shift from a norm where child sexual abuse is kept in fear and denial and children are easy targets, to a community where every child is protected through a community of trained and aware adults. 

Stewards of Children

Stewards of Children is a two-hour training designed to educate adults on how to recognize, prevent, and react responsibly to the reality of child sexual abuse, emphasizing child safety is every adult’s responsibility.

Our goal is simple: to educate and prepare our community to deal with and prevent child sexual abuse. The training teaches the steps to preventing abuse, recognizing warning signs, and reacting responsibly when abuse occurs.  Training credits are are available but we stress that Stewards of Children is for everyone - and is not limited or intended for professionals.

Find a Stewards of Children Training

We are also happy to set up private training for your organizations or businesses. To schedule a private training or for questions relating to the YMCA’s Darkness to Light initiative, contact anita.bennison@ymca.net 

Download Stewards of Children Information Sheet

Prevent Now!

Prevent Now! meetings are community meetings designed to create awareness and have discussions around the issues of child sexual abuse.  Meetings are open to the public and are a great first step for those exploring, getting involved and making a change.  

Find an upcoming Prevent Now! meeting today. 

If you would like to bring a Prevent Now meeting to your organization to open up the conversation about your role in protecting our youth, please contact anita.bennison@ymca.net.

To learn more about the Darkness to Light organization, CLICK HERE.

Partners in Prevention in the News 

* Statistics from Darkness to Light, 7 Radcliff Street, Ste. 200, Charleston, SC. 29403.  For more information visit www.d2l.org.