ChicagoCAC offers free and low-cost education sessions for professionals, community members and front-line providers on preventing, recognizing, responding to and reporting sexual abuse. In addition to our monthly trainings (currently available via Zoom), we also offer a variety of trainings to professional groups, caretakers, schools, and other organizations upon request.
In most cases, continuing education units (CE hours) are available for licensed social workers, counselors and psychologists for a small fee.
In accordance with Federal law, ChicagoCAC does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, order of protection status, marital status, physical or mental disability, military status, sexual orientation, or unfavorable discharge from military service when it comes to providing training.
Keeping Children Safe Online: What parents and child-serving professionals need to know about preventing and responding to sexual misconduct over the internet
It is essential that parents and child-serving professionals know what they can do to prevent sexual harm involving children that may occur online. This education session covers preventing and responding to online child sexual abuse. Through lecture, discussion and case examples, adults attending this training will understand:
- The nature of online boundary violations, inappropriate explicit communication, child sexual abuse images, sextortion and other online sexual misconduct
- How to talk to children about digital safety
- Prevention tips and resources
This education session is intended for professionals, parents and community members, and it can be customized for specific audiences by request.
Human Trafficking: How to identify it and work with victims and survivors
An estimated 16,000-24,500 girls and women are victims of commercial sexual exploitation in the city of Chicago each year, according to the Center for Impact Research. Through this training, you will learn:
- The prevalence of trafficking in Chicagoland
- Signs of trafficking, to help identify potential victims
- How to work with survivors of all ages
Audience: This awareness training is tailored for each type of audience. Parents, teachers, faith leaders, business leaders and community members who regularly interact with minors or young adults who are high-risk are encouraged to receive this training. Additionally, front-line professionals in positions to identify situations of trafficking, including law enforcement, healthcare and hospitality should consider acquiring this training. Continuing education credits may be available for licensed psychologists, social workers and counselors.
Keeping My Family Safe: Preventing child sexual abuse
Preventing sexual abuse starts with caring adults taking responsibility for protecting children and youth. Learn the important things you can communicate to your child, behaviors to watch out for, and steps to take to keep children safe. Through lecture and group discussion, the presentation covers:
- how to communicate healthy sexual development
- the importance of teaching children the proper names for all body parts
- how to teach boundaries, privacy and consent
- behavioral warning signs in children, youth and adults
- ways to speak up during concerning situations
- creating a family safety plan
- resources on child development and sexual abuse
Audience: This training is intended for parents and other caregivers, and it can be customized for specific audiences by request.
Training and Consultation for Youth-serving Organizations
Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center’s prevention education series is targeted at individuals and agencies that work directly with children and youth. Sexual abuse is a preventable public health problem, and it is up to caring adults to protect children and youth. Prevention programming is most effective when it addresses risk factors for sexual abuse on both an individual and organizational level.
In addition to educating staff, ChicagoCAC’s trainings include changes to the organization and system levels to promote and sustain equitable, safe and sexual abuse-free environments. Prevention programming like this has shown improvements across participants’ measures of attitudes, knowledge and behavior. This in-depth education provides comprehensive information on how to prevent sexual abuse, recognize signs of abuse and respond to known or suspected abuse. The trainings include customized content for direct, non-direct, administrative and supervisory staff. The education series also includes evaluation and outcomes measures.
Employee Training: Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center’s “Keeping Children Safe: Preventing, recognizing, responding and reporting sexual abuse” training is appropriate for all employees, and offers both in-person and online options. The training includes case scenarios for discussion and learning, and covers the following topics:
- definition of child sexual abuse
- behavioral indicators of abuse: what to watch out for in adults
- inappropriate sexual contact among children: what to watch out for in youth
- reacting to disclosures of sexual abuse
- the mandated reporting process
- steps to take to keep kids safe in program settings (including summer camp)
- guidelines on interactions between staff and participants
- responding to inappropriate behavior and suspicions of child sexual abuse
- providing safe physical environments
Consultation for Administration: For youth-serving organizations’ supervisory and administrative teams, ChicagoCAC provides consultation on policies and procedures that support the staff trainings and are critical to a successful system-wide prevention initiative. The goal of this providing this component is to help create a culture of safety and prevent sexual abuse within programs and agencies, and to decrease or eliminate opportunities when and where abuse can occur.
After conducting a needs assessment, ChicagoCAC staff provide guidance and consultation on concrete ways to enhance an agency’s policy and procedures, as well as the use of physical space to better ensure the safety of the children and youth served. Consultation can include:
- Screening and selecting employees and volunteers
- Enhancing policy, procedure and practices related to safety and prevention
- Monitoring behavior
- Ensuring safe physical environments
- Responding to inappropriate behavior, breaches in policy, and allegations and suspicions of child sexual abuse
- Development of “Prevention team members” within an organization in order to sustain efforts
In Illinois, Erin’s Law requires that all public schools implement child-focused sexual abuse prevention education that:
- teaches in pre-K through 5th grade students age-appropriate information about how to recognize child sexual abuse and tell a trusted adult
- requires school personnel to be informed about child sexual abuse
- provides parents and guardians with information on the warning signs of child sexual abuse, plus any needed assistance, referrals or resources to support victims and their families
Erin’s Law is named after Erin Merryn, a childhood sexual assault survivor, author, speaker and activist. The law is a national effort that began in Erin’s home state of Illinois and has passed in the majority of other states. View the Erin’s Law Task Force Executive Summary, or learn more on the Erin’s Law website.
Training for Schools: ChicagoCAC offers trainings for administrators, teachers and other school personnel on talking to students about child sexual abuse prevention, the effects of child sexual abuse on children, responding to abuse, and mandated reporting as outlined in Erin’s Law.
Trainings for Parents: ChicagoCAC’s Keeping My Family Safe is a customized training for parents and caregivers on important things to communicate to children, behaviors to watch out for in your children and steps to take to keep children safe. This training empowers caregivers to have these tough conversations with their children and the adults who care for them.
Education for Students: ChicagoCAC is available to assist schools with meeting these requirements. Please contact us for more information.
Keeping Children with Disabilities Safe: Preventing sexual abuse
Children with disabilities are at an increased risk for abuse and because of communication, mobility and/or dependence needs may have special considerations to address . This training for providers and parents of children with special needs covers:
- Creating family safety plans to prevent sexual abuse
- Talking to children to reduce vulnerability to abuse
- Protecting children from abuse in program settings
- Identifying behaviors in adults, teens and children that may put them at risk of sexually abusing children
Understanding Trauma & Resiliency: Introduction the impact of trauma, an understanding of resilience and the importance of trauma-informed environments
Trauma has a significant impact on children and adults. Trauma-informed environments encourage resilience in children, caregivers and providers. Please note: There are fees associated with this training. Contact us for rates.
ChicagoCAC conducts this training at workplaces and community sites to discuss:
- Defining trauma and its prevalence in society
- Impacts of trauma on individuals and communities
- Elements of resilience and trauma-informed environments
- How to support children, families and yourself
Audience: This training is intended for professionals and community members. In most cases, CE hours are available for a fee for licensed social workers, counselors and psychologists.
Seguridad Familiar: Previniendo el abuso sexual infantil
Prevenir el abuso sexual empieza con adultos tomando responsabilidad para proteger a los niños y a los jóvenes. Como padres, debemos saber que comunicar a nuestros hijos, a que comportamientos ponerle atención, y que pazos tomar para mantener a los niños seguros. Como proveedores de servicios, debemos saber y compartir esta información con nuestras familias.
El ChicagoCAC provee entrenamiento gratis para padres, cuidadores y proveedores de servicios a familias sobre:
- como comunicar el desarrollo saludable de la sexualidad
- la importancia de enseñar los términos correctos para las partes del cuerpo
- como enseñar los límites, la privacidad y el consentimiento
- planificación de un plan de la seguridad familiar
- maneras de decir algo durante situaciones preocupantes
- comportamientos de advertencia en los niños, jóvenes, y adultos
- recursos del desarrollo infantil y abuso sexual
Descargue nuestra lista de libros recomendados para familias. Si está interesado en este entrenamiento, comuníquese con Ana Nunez: 312-492-3185 o ANunez@ChicagoCAC.org.