Why Child Safety Training?
Estimates show that 90% of sex offenders don’t have criminal records and therefore will go undetected without proper training of your volunteers and staff to identify signs of abuse and how to handle reporting of abuse.
Even as your ministry makes that commitment, realize that we are fighting against what seems to be an epidemic of child abuse in this country and throughout the world.
Experts estimate fewer than 10% of perpetrators are ever criminally prosecuted, due to the passage of time, legal time limits, adults who minimize an abuse outcry, or kids who never tell.
The statistics are staggering:
One (1) out of 5 girls is sexually abused before they turn 12, and 1 of 4 before 18. One (1) out of 8 boys is sexually abused before they turn 12, and 1 of 6 before 18. And even worse, many reports indicate that precisely because sexual predators target trusting environments where children are present, the incidence of child abuse is actually higher in the Christian community.
Indeed, 90% of registered sex offenders claim to be “religious” or “very religious.” The church and ministry is not immune to this epidemic: a recent survey of 600 missionary kids from several agencies revealed that 7% said they had been sexually abused growing up. Statistics do not begin to describe the devastating consequences of child abuse.
Consequences of abuse:
Victims of child abuse often struggle with the emotional and spiritual effects of this sin for the rest of their lives. Sadly, child abuse victims are themselves at higher risk of inflicting the abuse on other children. Allegations of abuse can also tarnish, sometimes irretrievably, a church’s ministry. Instead of being able to discuss the gospel, leadership must spend their time explaining to the media, to the courts, and to visitors why they weren’t able to prevent the abuse. And of course the financial impact can be devastating as well. Some churches have faced verdicts of up to $100 million for child abuse committed by those whom they were charged with supervising. Any church or ministry that sends an individual to serve in ministry (even those that serve without pay) may be held responsible for the actions of that individual.
Against this backdrop:
Protect My Ministry is determined to join with churches and other ministry partners in avoiding, as much as possible, incidences of child abuse on our watch.
Learn more about our online Child Safety Training.
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