News and Media


March 31, 2011
For Immediate Release

Canadian Centre for Child Protection helping reduce the risk of child sexual abuse through the free distribution of Commit to Kids programs to another 500 organizations

WINNIPEG, MB: Another 500 child-serving organizations have received a free copy of the Canadian Centre for Child Protection's Commit to Kids child sexual abuse prevention program, thanks to funding support received through Justice Canada's Victims Fund. This brings the total distribution of free programs to more than 11,000 organizations in the past year.

"This program is the first of its kind in Canada, and it has the potential to significantly increase the safety of our children by reducing their risk of victimization," said Lianna McDonald, Executive Director of the Canadian Centre for Child Protection. "While we've already been able to reach 11,000 organizations, that's just a fraction of child-serving organizations in Canada that could benefit from the program. It's exciting to think of the impact this program could have if every child-serving organization used it."

The Commit to Kids program is designed to help organizations reduce the likelihood that an offender will successfully gain access to and sexually abuse a child in their care. Easy to use and adaptable for organizations of any size, the program provides a comprehensive risk-management approach that goes far beyond criminal record checks and child abuse registry checks.

"The majority of adults who work with children do not harm them. Most environments are safe and provide fun experiences. However, there are individuals who will abuse their position of trust and offend against children," said McDonald. "The Commit to Kids program will help organizations manage the risk and establish guidelines and protocols to protect the children in their care."

The free distribution of the Commit to Kids program to more than 11,000 Canadian organizations was made possible through financial support from Public Safety Canada, Justice Canada and the Manitoba government. For more information on the program, parents and child-serving organizations are encouraged to visit Parents can download a free copy of an informational card that provides three steps to help them select a child-safe organization. Organizations can download a free copy of the program overview guide and access a coupon to receive $25 off the purchase cost of the program. (Coupon offer valid until April 29, 2011.)


If you are a member of the media and would like to arrange an interview with one of our spokespeople please contact our communications team:

Communications, Canadian Centre for Child Protection

204-801-2979 (Cell)



BACKGROUNDER: Commit to Kids

Commit to Kids can help organizations:

  • Prevent child sexual abuse through increased awareness and education
  • Evaluate risks that exist
  • Teach employees/volunteers (who will then teach children) the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour
  • Provide employees/volunteers with specific strategies on how to prevent abuse
  • Design programs that focus on child safety and supervision
  • Establish clear boundaries between employees/volunteers and children
  • Ensure that allegations of sexual abuse are handled in a sensitive, timely and effective mannerv
  • Understand their legal obligations to report child sexual abuse to a child welfare and/or law enforcement agency
  • Ensure the highest standard of practice when working with children

The Commit to Kids program includes:

  • A training kit for organizations, including information on: child sexual abuse; risk assessment and management; creating and enforcing a code of conduct for employees/volunteers; reporting disclosures of sexual abuse and addressing inappropriate behaviour; and policies on hiring, supervising, and training
  • A 30-minute training video and presentations for employees, volunteers, and parents
  • A sample child protection manual, complete with draft policies and procedures, that can easily be amended to suit the needs of individual organizations
  • A guide for parents that teaches them about the issue of child sexual abuse and helps them choose safe programs for their children
  • Supplemental tools such as reporting cards, website information, checklists and worksheets, and statistics