How to Protect Your Children from Child Abuse

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Youth, with their parents, completing exercises from the How to Protect Your Children from Child Abuse: A Parent's Guide (Cómo proteger a sus hijos del Abuso Infantil: Una Guía Para los Padres) pamphlet is a part of the Bobcat and Arrow of Light requirements for Cub Scouts and the Scout rank and Star rank requirements for Boy Scouts. There are different versions of the pamphlet for Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, and STEM Scouts.


How to Protect Your Children from Child Abuse: A Parent's Guide

Cub Scout

For Cub Scouts and their parents (No. 100-014, 2015 Printing) (English) —
For Cub Scouts and their parents (No. 100-073, 2015 Printing) (Español) —

Boy Scout

For Boy Scouts and their parents (No. 100-015, 2015 Printing) (English) —
For Boy Scouts and their parents (No. 100-016, 2015 Printing) (Español) —

STEM Scouts

For STEM Scouts and their parents (2015 Printing) (English) —

Additional Resources

BSA Youth Protection Materials

  • "It Happened to Me" is a video (DVD) for Cub Scout–age boys that portrays common situations in which sexual abuse can occur. The video discusses how sex offenders often resort to tricks for gaining access to their victims. It emphasizes that if a boy is sexually abused, he should talk to his parents or other trusted adults. The video also stresses that it is not the child’s fault if he is sexually abused; it is the sex offender who is responsible. “It Happened to Me” is available from your local BSA council and should be shown to boys 6 to 10 years of age only when a parent or other adult family member is present with the child. The BSA encourages the video to be viewed by each Cub Scout pack or den annually.
  • A Time to Tell” is a video (DVD), aimed at boys ages 11 to 14, that portrays common situations in which sexual abuse can occur. The video discusses ways that Scouts can recognize the strategies molesters use, respond to their attempts at molestation, and report any such attempts. Topics covered include abuse by adults and by other youth, Internet safety, and bullying. The BSA encourages each Boy Scout troop to view the video annually. “A Time to Tell” is available to parents as well as Scout leaders.
  • Cyber Chip
  • Youth Protection Training
  • BSA Youth Protection —

Recommended Reading

Books for Children

  • My Body Belongs to Me by Jill Starishevsky (helping children learn about their bodies and assuring children that it is OK to tell)
  • It’s My Body by Lory Freeman (teaching young children what to do about uncomfortable touches)
  • A Very Touching Book by Jan Hindman (teaching children what to do if there is “secret” touching; introduces and uses correct terms for genitals)

Books for Preteens and Teens

  • Life Freaks Me Out: And Then I Deal with It by K. L. Hong (Personal memoir about being a teenager and lessons learned along the way)
  • Words Wound: Delete Cyberbullying and Make Kindness Go Viral by Justin W. Patchin and Sameer Hinduja (Practical ideas to help teens recognize and prevent online bullying)
  • My Story by Katherine Tarbox (A teenager’s true story about her own experience with Internet exploitation)

Books for Adults

  • How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish (tested strategies to use for better parent/child communication)
  • Parents Preventing Abuse by Dr. Jaime Romo (e-book that guides parents to mitigate the conditions that allow child sexual abuse and prevent abuse of their children)
  • Protecting the Gift: Keeping Children and Teenagers Safe (and Parents Sane) by Gavin De Becker (How to help nurture your child’s gut instinct as a protective factor; suitable for teens and parents)
  • Reaching Teens (Strength-Based Communication Strategies to Build Resilience and Support Healthy Adolescent Development) by eds. Dr. Kenneth R. Ginsburg and Dr. Sara B. Kinsman

Other Sources of Child Abuse Prevention Information

Gundersen National Child Protection Training Center
Winona State University
Maxwell Hall, 2nd Floor
Winona, MN 55987
Telephone: 507-457-2890
ChildHelp USA
4350 E. Camelback Road
Building F250
Phoenix, AZ 85018
Telephone: (480) 922-8212
Child Welfare Information Gateway
1250 Maryland Ave., SW, 8th Floor
Washington, DC 20024
Telephone: 800-394-3366
[email protected]
Jacob Wetterling Resource Center
Gundersen National Child Protection Training Center
2021 E. Hennepin Ave., Suite 360
Minneapolis, MN 55413
Telephone: 507-457-2890
National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
699 Prince St.
Alexandria, VA 22314-3175
Telephone: 800-843-5678
National Children’s Advocacy Center
210 Pratt Ave.
Huntsville, Alabama 35801
Telephone: 256-533-KIDS (5437)
National Children’s Alliance
516 C Street NE
Washington, DC 20002
Telephone: 202-548-0090
Prevent Child Abuse America
200 South Wabash Ave.,
10th Floor
Chicago, IL 60604
Telephone: 312-663-3520
200 Independence Ave., SW
Washington, DC 20201
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