Five Days of Action 2019 | West Suburban YMCA

Five Days of Action at the Y

Apr 18, 2019

The West Suburban YMCA is marking Child Abuse Prevention Month with Five Days of Action, April 22-26, 2019. Leading up to Healthy Kids Day®--a national initiative to improve the health and well-being of kids, which will be held at the West Suburban YMCA on April 27--Five Days of Action focuses on preventing child sexual abuse by sharing tips on how adults can prevent child sexual abuse.

During April and all year long, The West Suburban YMCA encourages adults and organizations in the community to play a vital role in making Newton and surrounding towns a safer place for children. This year's Five Days of Action theme is "Know. See. Respond." When adults know how abuse happens, see the warning signs, and respond quickly to prevent abuse, they foster a culture of child abuse prevention. Together, we can bring awareness to the issue of child sexual abuse in our communities and have important conversations around how we can all work together to prevent it from happening.

"Protecting children from sexual abuse must be the number one goal of every person who cares about the health and well-being of kids," said Jack Fucci, West Suburban YMCA President and CEO. "Together, we can stand up to demand that children are protected and encourage adults to make it happen in our community. It takes all of us."

At the West Suburban YMCA, steps are taken to ensure a safe environment for every child who enters the building, enrolls in a program or attends summer camp. These steps include pre-employment screenings that consist of a Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) check & Sexual Offender Registry Information (SORI) check, and comprehensive reference checks that include standardized questions for assessing risk for abuse. Once an employee is hired, they complete an extensive Child Abuse Prevention Training Program, which is repeated annually, and are mandated to report any suspected abuse. Policies exist to ensure that staff and volunteers are never alone with a child, and all interaction between staff and child must be observable and interruptible.

"Individuals who are trained in abuse prevention are more likely to understand their role as protector, to recognize the signs abuse is occurring, and to report suspicious or inappropriate behavior – to know, see, and respond," affirmed Fucci. "During Five Days of Action, we want to provide resources to as many people as possible about child sexual abuse prevention, because we all play a role in keeping children safe."

The West Suburban YMCA and the YMCA Guardians for Child Protection, with support from YMCA of the USA, Darkness to Light, the Redwoods Group Foundation, and Praesidium have made materials available to help adults learn more about preventing child sexual abuse.

For more information about preventing child sexual abuse visit

Materials are derived from YMCA of the USA's "Know. See. Respond." copyrighted in 2019.


  • One in ten children will be sexually abused before their 18th birthday. 
  • 90% of child sexual abuse victims know their abuser. 
  • Approximately 30% of children who are sexually abused are abused by family members. 
  • 60% of child sexual abuse victims never tell anyone. 
  • False reports are rare. Research shows that only 4 to 8% of child sexual abuse reports are fabricated.


  • You do not need to have proof that abuse is occurring to make a report, only reasonable suspicion. Reasonable suspicion means that you have witnessed maltreatment or boundary violations, either in the child or adult, or both. Or, you have received a disclosure from a child about abuse, neglect, or boundary violations towards them.
  • Child sexual abuse reports should be made to the police and/or state child protective services. 
  • Contact the Darkness to Light Helpline at 866-FOR-LIGHT or text LIGHT to 741741 to have questions answered by trained counselors at no charge.