«Safe Touch» is a program to prevent sexual abuse for children 5-9 years old. It is an initiative of the ELIZA...
In Greece, only 1 out of 6 children state that they have experienced an "unsafe touch"; most of them choose to hide in silence, out of fear or shame. In fact, 9 times out of 10, the perpetrator is a familiar person, a person that the child has learned to trust.
“Safe Touch” Program
«Safe Touch», a program for the prevention of sexual abuse for children 5-9 years old, is an initiative of the ELIZA Association - Company against Child Abuse and is organized in collaboration with the “The New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children”(NYSPCC), and the participation of a group of psychology students of the American College of Greece (ACG), as part of an internship, under the supervision of psychology teachers.
The program "Safe Touch" is implemented with the Founding Donor of the "Stavros Niarchos Foundation", sponsored by the company COSMOTE and supported by the companies "NEA ODOS SA" and the "Bank of Greece".
Launched in 2016, the program provides training in recognizing and addressing the phenomenon of sexual abuse, for parents and teachers. The pilot phase was conducted face-to-face, from 2016 to 2019, in selected public and private schools in the prefectures of Attica and Crete. A total of 2.600 children, 1.000 teachers and 2.000 parents were trained.
The aim of the program is to help children identify situations that can potentially harm them, to distinguish "safe" from "unsafe" touches and "good" from "bad" secrets, to learn strategies that will say "no" in such situations that make them feel uncomfortable and to encourage the revelation of the fact to adults they trust.
The methodology of the program "Safe Touch" is based on a laboratory-puppet show, in which the basic knowledge and the corresponding questions about the protection of the body are covered:
- What are the private parts of the body?
- What is the difference between a "Safe" and a "NO - Safe" Touch?
- What should a young child do when an adult makes them feel uncomfortable, upset or scared?
- From whom and how can a young child seek help if they experience an incident of sexual abuse?
A program-legacy for all schools in Greece
For the program’s viability and the ease of dissemination throughout Greece, the “Safe Touch” became digital. With the aim of integration in the Kindergarten and the first grades of Primary School, the “Safe Touch” joined, in 2021, the “Skills Laboratories” of the Institute of Educational Policy. In this way, teachers from all over the country can train and educate their students.
At WIDE Services we feel blessed that the ELIZA Association honoured us and let us undertake the implementation of this very important project.
All children have the right to grow up without fear. Let's create a safe environment that will keep them away from any attempt at sexual abuse. Get informed and become the shield that will protect them!