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Education and Prevention

Early Childhood

Children playing doctor

The Boston Area Rape Crisis Center, in collaboration with the Enough Abuse Campaign, is committed to supporting early childhood educators in promoting healthy development and protecting children from sexual abuse. We have designed several tools to support these efforts.


Research Brief: Survey of Massachusetts Early Educators on Responding to Children’s Sexual Behaviors, by Professor Anne Douglass

In this research brief, Douglass summarizes the findings from a survey of educators of children ages two through five in Massachussetts. Her findings include that 71% of those surveyed reported observing a child engaging in sexual behaviors in the classroom and 85% reported that training on  these topics would be helpful. 

Training for Educators

“She did WHAT?” “He said WHAT?” How to respond to the sexual behaviors of children

The Boston Area Rape Crisis Center, the Enough Abuse Campaign, and Anne Douglass, PhD, Assistant Professor, Graduate College of Education, University of Massachusetts, Boston, have collaborated to produce this training and Manual for Trainers for the training.

The Training

The training is for early childhood educators who work with children through the age of five. The goal of the training is to demonstrate a model for responding to sexual behaviors to promote healthy child development and prevent child sexual abuse. The training draws upon the latest research on child sexual abuse prevention to provide new information and strategies about how to increase early education professionals’ skills and confidence in responding proactively to issues of sexual development and sexual abuse. The training is structured to facilitate practical application of the “take home messages.” It utilizes adult learning principles to engage participants, build upon prior knowledge, and gives participants practice translating new skills and knowledge to their own work. The training includes the use of PowerPoint with photos and other visual aids. Participants engage in active learning techniques throughout the training, which includes small group problem-solving with scenarios, large group discussion, and group activities. All training materials are available in English and Spanish.

Manual for Trainers: The training manual is intended as a guide to allow an experienced trainer to deliver the training. It includes detailed descriptions of each activity including: the purpose of the activity, learning objectives, preparing to lead the activity, and detailed instructions, including some scripts, on how to lead the activity. Download the training manual. 

Child care center policies

We also provide individual consultation to directors of child care centers on how to improve their policies in order to prevent child sexual abuse and promote healthy development and communicate with parents on these issues. If you are interested, please contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Frequently asked questions

You may have questions about some of these materials after you have reviewed them. The answers to the questions that we have heard most often from new trainers are included in the manual. But we are sure there are more. Please .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) your questions, and we will respond.

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