Stop It Now! was founded by Fran Henry, a survivor of childhood sexual abuse who learned first hand that standard approaches to keeping children safe from child sexual abuse at that time did not respond to the complex relationships surrounding most abuse.
Her vision? To have the sexual abuse of children recognized as a preventable public health problem, to make helping adults take responsibility to prevent and stop sexual abuse of children a main focus of prevention, and to create effective programs based on these principles. She created Stop It Now! over 20 years ago to prevent the sexual abuse of children by mobilizing adults, families and communities to take actions that protect children before they are harmed.
Our Approach: using research to inform practical, balanced solutions
Our efforts are guided by this understanding: to truly prevent harm to children, all adults need to accept responsibility for recognizing, acknowledging and confronting behaviors that lead to abuse. More importantly, any long-term prevention strategy must change societal norms, so the sexual abuse of children is not tolerated and appropriate forms of help, support and accountability are provided to child victims and adult survivors, those who sexually abuse children, and the families of both.
- Help Services - Provides direct help to individuals with questions or concerns about child sexual abuse.
- Prevention Advocacy - Advocates for the issue to be addressed as a public health priority.
- Prevention Education - Develops, assesses and distributes educational materials.
- Technical Assistance and Training – Provides consulting and training services to professionals, organizations, coalitions, and community-based programs.
Stop It Now! has made significant and permanent contributions to the fields of public health, child abuse prevention, and crime prevention. These include pioneering a focus on adult responsibility for child sexual abuse prevention, successfully developing and replicating community-based prevention program, and collaborative work with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Consistent with a public health approach, Stop It Now! uses current scientific research, original market research, and program tracking and evaluation to develop its programs. Using a variety of methods - from focus groups to public opinion surveys to meta-analyses - and cooperating with leading researchers, we continue to build the evidence base needed for practical and effective prevention programs and materials.