CAP (Child Assault Prevention) UK is a charity that brings communities together to build resilience against child abuse.
CAP UK has been operating in the south west for 24 years with the aim to reduce children’s vulnerability to abuse. The charity has a unique approach focussing on positive messages of empowerment. Using role-plays, puppets and guided group discussion, the classroom workshops train children and young people to recognise and deal with potentially dangerous situations. CAP UK emphasises self-assertion, peer support and communication as prevention strategies.
All student workshops are centred on the rights to be SAFE, STRONG and FREE. Children learn ownership of their bodies, safe and unsafe touches and secrets. They are also given permission to act if they ever feel unsafe, whoever it is that makes them feel like that. ‘Review time’ is held at the end of the sessions. It is a time offered to the children to individually review the strategies with the CAP facilitators and is vital part of the programme.
“They made me feel strong. It was a good chance to talk to someone about things I had not told anyone.” – child
As part of our whole school community approach, separate staff and parent workshops always precede children’s workshops. All school staff, e.g. meal time assistants and caretakers are invited to our workshop. During this session CAP teaches the realities of abuse, the signs a child may show if being abuse and how to respond to that child. The parent’s session is an opportunity to explore parenting strategies and learn how to communicate with children about keeping safe but without taking away their innocence.
“This has been extremely important. It has made me think about the language I use at home.” – parent
The sessions build confidence to know that it is everyone’s responsibility to keep children safe.
CAP re-visits each school community every 18 months with a different input each time, so that CAP’s messages become embedded in the community contributing to children’s retention of protective behaviours over time.
Young persons programme
We also run a programme in secondary schools for 13/14 year olds. This programme designed to equip young people to recognise sexual exploitation and know how to resist on and off line pressures. In response to community need, this has been developed with a panel of young people to educate about healthy relationships and consent.
Visit the CAP UK website to find out more or book workshops for your school.