Teach sexual assault prevention from childhood on…

You know a survivor. You might be the first person someone tells immediately after being sexually assaulted. A survivor might also wait weeks, months, or even years to share what happened. Both are common reactions. If someone you know tells you their story, here are examples of supportive things you can say:

  • I believe you.
  • Thank you for telling me.
  • It wasn’t your fault.
  • You did nothing wrong.
  • I am here for you.
  • You are brave.
  • You are never alone. How can I help?

 

It’s important to demonstrate healthy personal boundaries with your child early on. Age-appropriate lessons about boundaries and consent can help shape your child’s values.

Support your child’s healthy development:

  • Respect your child’s right to make choices about their body.

For example, don’t make them hug someone they don’t want to.

  • Encourage your child to respect the choices of others. For example, tell them to ask their friends if it’s okay before giving hugs, holding hands, taking pictures, etc.
  • Teach your child the correct names of all their body parts, including their genitals. This information empowers children to know their bodies and better understand development.

Talking to your kids about sexual assault

 

Support survivors and prevent sexual violence:

  • Believe survivors when they share their stories with you. Assure them it wasn’t their fault, no matter the circumstances.
  • Train staff, volunteers, and congregants to model healthy behavior and boundaries with adults and children.
  • Organize educational programs on topics like healthy relationships and healthy masculinity.
  • Collaborate with and support your local rape crisis center.
    • For example, post its contact information on bulletin boards.
  • Create a victim-centered policy around safe ways for people who commit sexual harm to remain part of your congregation.

 

We believe parents can start educating children about consent and empowerment as early as 1 year old and continuing into the college years. It is our sincere hope that this education can help us raise empowered young adults who have empathy for others and a clear understanding of healthy consent.

Teaching kids about consent

 

Teach your athletes that derogatory jokes may seem harmless, but they maintain environments that support disrespect and, in some cases, violence. These comments can shape long-term attitudes that may lead members of your team to think it’s acceptable to hurt others.

Teach your athletes

 

Support an equal and safe campus community:

  • Sponsor campus-wide awareness events that focus on consent, healthy sexuality, and bystander intervention.
  • Partner with other groups on campus or in the local community that support equality, such as LGBTQ organizations, your campus women’s center, or local rape crisis centers.
  • Educate members about what enthusiastic, affirmative consent looks like.*
  • Step in and speak up when you hear rape jokes, see sexual harassment,  observe situations where consent hasn’t been or cannot be given.
  • Sign the It’s On Us pledge**

 

As a leader of a faith community, you help set the tone for how your community responds to this issue.

  • Believe survivors when they share their stories with you. Assure them it wasn’t their fault, no matter the circumstances.
  • Train staff, volunteers, and congregants to model healthy behavior and boundaries with adults and children.
  • Organize educational programs on topics like healthy relationships and healthy masculinity.
  • Collaborate with and support your local rape crisis center. For example, post its contact information on bulletin boards.
  • Create a victim-centered policy around safe ways for people who commit sexual harm to remain part of your congregation.

 

Church/faith leader suggestions

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