In 2014, The NYSPCC concluded a two-year study funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) that rigorously evaluated The NYSPCC’s child sexual abuse prevention workshop, Safe Touches: Personal Safety Training for Children
. This is one of the only such studies of its kind to use a randomized controlled trial design to examine the effectiveness of a school-based sexual abuse prevention program for children. The study tested the extent to which children gained and retained the knowledge and self-protective skills taught in the workshop. The study was also one of the first that has focused primarily on children of color from low-income communities, making it a significant contribution to the child protection field. A total of 492 children participated in the study, exceeding The NYSPCC’s target sample size of 320 participants by 54%, and bolstering the significance of the results. Study data revealed that children who participated in the Safe Touches
workshop demonstrated statistically significant increases in knowledge of sexual abuse prevention concepts compared to their peers who had not yet participated in the workshop. The NYSPCC has presented these findings to more than 420 professionals at six conferences across the country. In addition, The NYSPCC published the outcomes of this work in the prestigious American Journal of Public Health, as well as in the APSAC Advisor, a quarterly news journal for professionals in the field of child abuse and neglect. These citations can be accessed here
To learn more about The NYSPCC’s NIH-funded studies or other research activities, please contact Jacqueline Holloway, Ph.D.