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“5 Reasons Why” The NEW Stewards of Children®: Theory of Change

#4: It Better Engages the Theory of Social Behavioral Change | By more closely aligning with Darkness to Light's Theory of Change, this training incorporates learning and practices that best engage social behavior change, a proven method of successful prevention.

What is the Theory of Change?

Child sexual abuse is a public health issue and to tackle that issue, Darkness to Light has created an evidence-informed Theory of Change that guides all our program development, advocacy initiatives, and training designs. By attending to the individual, institutional, and societal factors, Darkness to Light has successfully addressed systemic conditions to create prevention-oriented communities throughout the United States and abroad. When partnering with organizations or communities, Darkness to Light supports teams in the development of a comprehensive prevention plan which helps to establish a culture of child protection.

Using a human-centered design framework, this strategy addresses two things; the target audience’s willingness and ability to prevent abuse and recognizes that adults exist in a social system, all influencing each other’s ability to affect change. To achieve this prevention paradigm, we focus on comprehensive prevention programming, advocacy for stakeholder engagement and ownership, and training to improve awareness and skills among adults.

Our Goal

With our Theory of Change, we hope that together, overtime, we will be able to witness:

  • Increase available resources for research, prevention community mobilization, policy implementation, and advocacy,

  • Reduce stigma around discussing the issue and toward those who report, take action to prevent child sexual abuse,

  • Increase faith in the system and the belief that organization and legal systems will work effectively for prevention, and when reports or suspicions are filed,

  • Increase accountability among adults who believe they are responsible for prevention and consistently take action to protect children.

Your Spheres of Influence

Each one of us has areas where our opinion holds some weight. It could be at our place of employment, on social media, with friend groups, in church groups, or within our families. We consider your different spheres of influence and want you tothink about the impact you can make within those spheres when it comes to protecting children. It is through those social circles and connections with our community that we can affect the greatest change.

Embedding Change

The NEW Stewards of Children® allows participants to practice even more skill building as it relates to the 5 Steps to Protecting Children and builds on the 3 Empowerment Skills. As participants go through the training and begin applying what they are learning, they quickly learn that the skills are transferable to all settings in which their children are (be it home, work, community). By embedding these skills in our everyday lives and making them a priority in youth serving organizations, we will all begin to see that behaviors are changing at the community level. That is where we really see our prevention-oriented communities take shape.

Learn more about the NEW Stewards of Children® with our training information sheet.

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