Online self-help material to prevent child sexual abuse
- Save the Children Finland
Save the Children Finland in co-operation with the Criminal Sanctions agency and the Hospital District of Helsinki and Uusimaa (HUS) created a self-help program for adolescents and adults who are concerned about their sexual interest in children.
The program challenges misbeliefs and thoughts regarding sexual action towards children which are typical for people sexually interested in children. It also offers exercises to change these beliefs and provides information on where to seek help.
In 2015, Save the Children Finland had published the first self-help material for people who are sexually interested in children. This material has been widely used among professionals working in the field and it won the National Crime Prevention Price in 2015.
The new program was published in January 2018. The background for this program is in cognitive behavioral theory. The program is also better suited for adolescents, since it has many exercises and information on related issues like mental health disorders and substance abuse. Professionals working with offenders in Finland can easily use these exercises in their day-to-day work.
The program can be used anonymously and free of charge. It is available on Mental Hub (80,000-90,000 users per month), which is maintained by HUS and already has different self-help materials like coping with depression and anxiety. For more information, visit www.otanvastuun.fi (in Finnish only).
This article was initially published in INHOPE's newsletter and is reproduced here with permission.
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