We Can Prevent Child Sexual Abuse in Wallowa County.

We’ve all seen the stories: A trusted adult is charged with sexually abusing the children they care for.

Child sexual abuse is a serious health problem that can happen anywhere, even in Wallowa County. Luckily, it can be stopped.

According to the prevention organization Darkness to Light, one in 10 children will experience child sexual abuse before their 18th birthday. And the impact can be long-lasting. Research shows that children who are sexually violated are far more likely to experience psychological problems.

Fortunately, there are steps to prevent this from happening in Wallowa County.

The Ford Family Foundation’s Protect Our Children program administers a nationally acclaimed training curriculum, Darkness to Light’s Stewards of Children. The training is available for free at Building Healthy Families.

Youth athletic coaches regularly interact with kids and teens and can become excellent mentors who help guide students on productive paths forward. That’s why all coaches should be trained to detect and prevent child sexual abuse.

In honor of National Child Abuse Prevention Month in April, I am asking you to help me put an end to child sexual abuse. The next free training will be held on Friday April 26, 2019, at 9 a.m. at Building Healthy Families. Advance registration is required by phone 541.426.9411 or email to mdalton@oregonbhf.org.

We owe it to the children of Wallowa County. Let’s be a champion for them.

Maria Weer

Enterprise

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