The 5 Steps to Protecting Children™ is an introductory guide presented by Dark2Light.org, outlining core principles for preventing, recognizing, and reacting responsibly to child sexual abuse. 

Step 1:  Learn the Facts

If we don't understand child sexual abuse, we can't end it.  It is highly likely that you know a child who has been or is being abused.

Step 2: Minimize Opportunity 

Safe environments can help reduce the risk for abuse.  More than 80% of sexual abuse cases occur in isolated, one-on-one situations.

Step 3:  Talk About It

Talking openly breaks down barriers and reduces stigma.  By talking openly about our bodies, sex, & boundaries, we can encourage children to share.

Step 4:  Recognize the Signs

Signs of abuse are not always obvious, but they are always there.  Emotional or behaviorial changes are often the most common signs. 

Step 5:  React Responsibly

It's our responsibility to act appropriately to suspicion, disclosure or discovery of abuse.  Only 4% to 8% of reports of all sexual abuse are false.