Health & Wellness

Metro YMCA of the Oranges Spearheads #PreventNow Campaign During National Child Abuse Prevention Month

481d7d878d493fa1952e_wiggles_hr.jpg
573d5cac340cadd6e902_2014-06-27_AOF_15749_CMYK.jpg
481d7d878d493fa1952e_wiggles_hr.jpg

LIVINGSTON, NJ — One in 10 people is sexually abused before age 18, a national statistic that has produced a population of 42-million adults scarred by the childhood crime.

Intervention can turn the tide, and during National Child Abuse Prevention Month in April, the Metropolitan YMCA of the Oranges will join with YMCAs across New Jersey to promote the awareness campaign, ‘5 Days of Action’ beginning Monday, April 4. 

“Studies show that people don’t know how to address child sexual abuse, but understanding signs of it and knowing ways to intercede are key to stopping child victimization,’’ said Maureen Simons, the Metro YMCA’s senior director of child safety. 

Running April 4-8, the campaign will provide adults with information and resources so they can protect children, Simons said.

Sign Up for E-News

The Metro YMCA, the largest association of YMCAs in New Jersey, is urging members and the communities it serves to learn the facts, share tools and resources, and sign the Pledge to Protect Children in branch lobbies. The campaign includes a major social-media component using the hashtag #PreventNow. The Y is asking people to spread messages each day of the week:

Monday: Learn the Facts

Tuesday: Not Stranger Danger

Wednesday: Learn to Prevent

Thursday: How to Talk to Kids

Friday: Commit to Take Action

“Until we can truly start talking about it, it’s hard to bring about change,’’ said Simons.

The Metro Y has provided Stewards of Children training to more than 2,600 adults—including almost all 1000 staff members at the association’s six branches—and worked with 30 community organizations. The evidence-based curriculum, created by the nonprofit Darkness To Light, teaches adults about child sexual abuse and how to identify unsafe situations and practices and react responsibly.

The Metro Y will be offering in-person training sessions April 20 at the Wayne YMCA, April 21 at the East Orange YMCA, and April 28 in Maplewood (location will be posted on the Metro Y website). Sessions run from 9:30 a.m. to noon. New Jersey residents can take the two-hour online version of the course for free at http://www.metroymcas.org/preventnow.

On another front, the Metro Y is poised to roll out the Raptor System, which will allow Y branches to screen visitors to ensure they are not registered sexual offenders. The West Essex YMCA will install the system in April, and the other branches will get it by year’s end, Simons said.

Children are the victim in 70 percent of reported sexual assaults, and in 90 percent of those cases the child knows and trusts the abuser. (In 40 percent of cases, the abuser is an older or larger child.)

The scars of abuse are lasting and affect all aspects of a person’s life, Simons said. Survivors have an increased likelihood of psychological disorders, excessive drug and alcohol use, eating disorders, suicidal tendencies, and violence. It also takes a financial toll, estimated nationally at more than $35 billion a year.''

“We’re trying to empower adults so they know what to do if they see behaviors that raise a red flag,’’ said Simons.

Parents can take simple steps to safeguard their children by, for example, questioning organizations that provide youth services on whether they do employee background checks, and what policies are in place to minimize risk, she said.

Richard K. Gorab, president and CEO of the 35,000-member Metro Y, belongs to YMCA Guardians Against Child Sexual Abuse, a group of Y leaders who are spearheading the awareness movement. 

“We are committed to championing this cause, to keep all children safe so they can enjoy healthy development on the path to adulthood,’’ said Gorab.

For more information, contact Simons at msimons@metroymcas.org or 781-752-6815.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

Livingston

Essex County Freeholders Celebrate African-American History Month

February 22, 2018

NEWARK, NJ – At its 2018 African-American History Month Celebration on Wednesday at the Hall of Records in Newark, the Essex County Board of Chosen Freeholders commemorated the heritage, culture, resilience, and spirit of the African-American community.

Brendan Gill, board president and Freeholder At-Large, first acknowledged African-American contributions, both past and present, in ...

How Do I Decide Which College to Attend?

Now that college acceptances are rolling in, how do I decide which to attend?

Your hard work in high school has paid off. You took your SAT/ACT exams, got the best grades you could, and filled out as many applications as you needed to. Acceptance letters are starting to come in and you need to make a decision on where you will go in the fall. It's hard to decide!! Here are some tips and ...

Hackensack Resident Charged with Sexual Assualt and Child Endangerment at YMCA

February 23, 2018

HACKENSACK, NJ — Acting Bergen County Prosecutor Dennis Calo announced the arrest of Timothy Smith of Hackensack on six counts each of Sexual Assault by Contact and Endangering the Welfare of a Child. The arrest is the result of an investigation conducted by the Bergen County Prosecutor's Office under the direction of Chief Robert Anzilotti, and the Hackensack Police Department ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_b9dfd7fd9ec06f34f8cd_coriphoto

Sat, February 24, 4:00 PM

Lobby - Office Building, Livingston

Gun Violence Prevention & Congressional Candidates

Other

Carousel_image_198d9d8e60fbe2b63cf4_be01635f448f7ee17d10_flyred_photo1

Sun, February 25, 1:00 PM

CycleBar, Livingston

Cycle Red for Heart Disease to Benefit Heart ...

Giving Back

Mon, February 26, 1:30 PM

Livingston Public Library, Livingston

Monday at the Movies: WILD OATS

Arts & Entertainment

NJ Acting Health Commissioner Cites Inglemoor as Example of Best Practices in Flu Prevention

February 22, 2018

LIVINGSTON, NJ — With one of the worst flu seasons in recent history taking a daily toll across the nation, New Jersey Acting Health Commissioner Dr. Shereef Elnahal visited Inglemoor Rehabilitation and Care Center this week to meet residents and praise clinical staff for their success at keeping the flu at bay.

"There are best practices that Inglemoor has already implemented ...

Let the Games Begin

I am truly awed by the Olympics.  Watching these superb young athletes on TV inspires me to renew my membership to the gym and pursue my lifelong dream of taking home the gold.  

 

The problem is that in my deluded head, I can see actually see myself standing atop the podium.  I am wrapped in a puffy designer ski coat with a huge piece of bling slung around my neck ...