The Fight For Innocence

Operational support provides solutions in the areas of insurance-coverage selection, statutory definitions and regulations, national child-abuse reporting, and critical document archiving.

Facilities/grounds address the camp property, targeting areas where abuse generally occurs, dealing with concealed recording devices, and processing camp visitors and vendors.

Staffing addresses the employee and volunteer hiring process, adding new strategies in application review, interviewing, screening, and red-flag analysis.

Training/orientation identifies direct and indirect access personnel, and provides appropriate instruction on abuse awareness, employee screening, a code of conduct, reporting guidelines, and supervision. Additional orientation should be provided to parents and campers on the organization’s code of conduct and reporting guidelines.

Monitor/report empowers employees and volunteers to assess human interactions in the camp setting, detect suspicious and/or inappropriate behavior, and follow reporting protocols.

Crisis response provides camp leaders with the necessary steps to take in the midst of a camp- or non-camp related allegation of abuse.

Child sexual abuse is not a new phenomenon, nor does it appear to be fading, even with increased public awareness. Youth-serving organizations must retool prevention and detection strategies in order to combat this problem. The unfortunate reality of identifying a would-be molester is that either he or she is pushed out of the program and down the road unpunished, or abuse is detected while it is occurring or shortly thereafter, neither of which result seems a triumph. Nevertheless, the satisfaction of ensuring that kids remain kids without losing the value of innocence is a battle worth fighting.

 Works Cited:

¹Briere, J., Eliot, D.M. “Prevalence and Psychological Sequence of Self-Reported Childhood Physical and Sexual Abuse in General Population: Child Abuse and Neglecti,” 2003, 27 10.

²Stop It Now! meta-analysis of ten random digit-dialed telephone surveys between 1997 and 2007.   

³Abuse Prevention Systems, Gregory Love and Kim Norris, Directors.  

Douglas,  Emily and D. Finkelhor, Childhood sexual abuse fact sheet, Crimes Against Children Research Center, May 2005

⁵ Sexual Assault of Young Children as Reported to Law Enforcement: Victim, Incident, and Offender Characteristics, by Howard N. Snyder, Ph.D.;NationalCenterfor Juvenile Justice, July 2000,U.S.Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs.

⁶”170-Page Child Molestation Instruction Manual Surfaces” Posted: 8:22 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 2, 2010

⁷”Child Molesters: A Behavioral Analysis,” Fifth Edition 2010, U.S. Department of Justice, p. 8.

⁸“Criminal background checks incomplete: How convicted felons can slip through safety net”

⁹The United States Department of Justice. “The Attorney General’s Report on Criminal History Background Checks,” June 2006.

 Rick Braschler is the Director of Risk Management for Kanakuk Kamps, and the Senior Risk Consultant for CircuiTree Solutions, offering specialized risk-consulting in the camping and outdoor-recreation industries. He is the author of “The Child Protection Plan,” a field manual for youth-serving organizations, which includes 122 measureable protection elements, policies, procedures, forms, checklists, and a self-audit. He can be reached at, 417-266-3337, or visit

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Related posts:

  1. Safeguarding Campers & Staff Members
  2. Insurance Coverage Expands
  3. ACA Endorses Child Protection Plan
  4. Behavior Check
  5. Stepping Up With Safer Programs

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