Public Education

Who are we and what do we do:

Dunebrook has over 30 years of experience working in the community providing support to parents and children to build safer, healthier, happier families through free Home-Visitation, Public Education and our Child Advocacy Center.

Our Public Education Program educates and empowers children and adults on how to recognize, respond and protect from child sexual abuse through our in person and virtual trainings. Using these evidenced based programs, Safer, Smarter Kids, Safer, Smarter Teens and Stewards of Children, we provide age appropriate trainings for schools, churches, youth serving organizations, as well as other groups in the community.

We invite parents to be the best parents possible. In the spirit of trust, kindness and experience, we can be there with them and support them, and their children and entire family. We’re just a phone call away!

Public Education and Our Community:

The key to keeping children safe is prevention education. According to the Child Molestation Research & Prevention Institute, 95% of child maltreatment is preventable through education.

Sounds good…what do I do next: · Call or email Sara Hoyt at 874-0007, to receive specific information about our sexual abuse prevention training.

Our prevention trainings are free and serve a variety of different settings. We’ve been funded for over 30 years by the generosity of community grants, fundraising support, and some federal program funding.

Body Safety

According to the Child Molestation Research & Prevention Institute, 95% of child maltreatment is preventable through education. Dunebrook’s goal in Public Education is to prevent child sexual abuse by:

  1. Educating and empowering children to self-protect and identify who they can talk to if something happens,
  2.  Teaching educators, parents and other interested adults in how to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to suspicions or allegations
  3. Reducing the social stigma through education and talking more about the problem.

Educating children to be confident, informed and in control of their own bodies is essential, because perpetrators seek out the child who is less confident and less likely to take action against inappropriate actions. All children have to know self-protection strategies.

Body Safety educates Kindergarten-5th grade children in self-protection and how to respond if something has happened to them or someone they know. It is a powerful, non-threatening, age-appropriate 30-minute presentation; it is not sex education, but rather a body positive empowerment program. Children learn the names of their body parts, and identify to whom they can talk if something has happened.

Safer, Smarter Teens

Safer, Smarter Teens educates middle schoolers about the warning signs of unsafe situations and what actions they can take to reduce risks, stay safe, and access help. It is presented in six sessions, typically during health or gym class. Topics include: self-esteem, personal power, grooming, online safety/social media, acceptance and boundaries.

Education is especially critical for girls, who are shown to be even more vulnerable than boys to this crime. According to David Finkelhor, Director of the Crimes Against Children Research Center, girls are sexually abused at a rate of four times that of boys. According to the National Sexual Abuse Resource Center, 91% of rape and sexual assault victims are female. (Rennison, 2002). Sexually abused girls are 2.2 times as likely as non-abused peers to become teen mothers. (Noll & Putnam, 2009). The risk continues into adulthood, as more than one-third of women who report being raped before age 18 also experience rape as an adults. (Black et al, 2010).

The early exposure to safety education is critical, as children are most vulnerable to sexual abuse between the ages of 7 and 13. (Finkelhor, 1994) Children learn and remember through repetition. When children see the prevention program every year in school, they gain the courage to come forward. Safer, Smarter Teens for High Schoolers also focuses on how to recognize, respond and protect themselves from sexual abuse but includes valuable information about consent, safe and unsafe relationships, dating violence and advocating for others.

Each year the Public Education program, Body Safety, reaches over 20,000 students with a continued goal to reach more. Our sexual abuse prevention program works in two ways, one, to prevent the abuse from ever occurring and two, to prevent it from continuing to happen.

Stewards of Children

Ultimately, keeping children safe is an adult responsibility. Stewards of Children is a 2.5 hour presentation which educates adults in the facts about child sexual abuse so they can prevent, recognize and respond appropriately.

Dunebrook presented Stewards of Children to over 200 adults in 2021 and strives to increase the number of participants each year.

The Stewards of Children Program is a critical training used in a variety of settings. The Stewards of Children Program helps adults come together and create important dialogue on how to create safe environments for children and how to support children who have experienced this type of traumatic abuse.