#childsafety | Pamplin Media Group – Learn to spot, stop, child sexual abuse

Local nonprofit Restore Hope will host training to help protect kids from dangerous and traumatizing situations

A local organization has dedicated itself to training community members on how to prevent child sexual abuse from happening in East Multnomah County through a series of workshops.

Restore Hope, a Gresham-based nonprofit organization that has been working to prevent child sexual abuse for more than a decade, is hosting two upcoming trainings that will teach adults how to spot and stop abuse from occurring. The program follows Darkness to Light’s Stewards of Children training — an internationally-recognized 5-step protocol that is perfect for educators, social workers, law enforcement, sports officials and more.

“It is every adult’s responsibility to keep kids safe,” said Eric Jones, president and survivor support director for Restore Hope. “The more people we train to watch when kids are at play, the safer they will be.”

The trainings are interactive and have poignant video segments that share testimonials from male and female survivors, including a former gold medal winning Olympic gymnast and the 1957 Miss America winner.

The training costs $20 to attend, and people can register ahead of time by contacting Executive Director Pam Congdon at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by calling 503-667-1189. You can also learn more by visiting restoretheirhope.com

The upcoming sessions are both from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturday. The first is scheduled for Jan. 25 at Riverhills Church, 1217 S.E. Fourth St., and the second will be on Feb. 1 at the First Baptist Church, 224 Powell Blvd. Walk-ups the day of the training are also welcome.

“We want to prevent child sexual abuse from ever occurring,” Jones said.

For those unable to attend the upcoming trainings, Jones shared some simple changes that can be made to help ensure the safety of children. His number one advice is to trust your inner voice — if something feels strange or off, investigate.

“Talk to a child in a safe environment and don’t lead them,” Jones said. “Just listen.”

According to Restore Hope, 80% of child sexual abuse is done by those the victim knew beforehand. The abuse also most often happens in isolated settings. Jones said one potential way to protect kids is by preventing them from being alone in one-on-one situations. Also, you can check in on things unexpectedly.

“If you have a babysitter watching your kids, you could return home an hour after leaving to make sure everything is OK,” he said.

The group also suggests keeping doors open and looking into installing cameras as a way to prevent private spaces where abuse occurs.

“You can make things hard on perpetrators,” Jones said.

The organization is creating a training video geared toward youth that will be shown in local schools. Restore Hope is also dedicated to supporting survivors — connecting them to community resources and counseling.

“Survivors don’t have to feel ashamed or guilty — it wasn’t their fault,” Jones said.

If you go

What: Restore Hope will present two workshops designed to teach adults how to identify and prevent child sexual abuse

When: 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25, at Riverhills Church, 1217 S.E. Fourth St.; and Saturday, Feb. 1, at the First Baptist Church, 224 Powell Blvd.

Cost: $20 per person

Call: 503-667-1189 or email Pam Congdon at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register


You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.

Source link