The safety and well-being of children in the care of our Y is, and always will be, our top priority. Understanding the facts about child sexual abuse is crucial for addressing abuse and informing prevention efforts, policy decisions, and support services. We know that today:

  • 1 in 10 children are sexually abused before their 18th birthday.
  • 90% of children who are abused know the abuser.
  • There are more than 60 million adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse in the U.S. yet, 80% never reported their abuse.
  • Approximately 30% of children who are sexually abused are abused by family members.
  • 60% of child sexual abuse victims never tell anyone.  
  • False reports are rare. Research shows that less than 5% of child sexual abuse reports are fabricated.



How the Y Creates Safe Spaces for Children and Teens

As an organization, we have taken the following actions to keep kids safe in our Y facilities, camps, and programs and maintain the reputation of safety we have built during our 175-year history:


All YMCA of Greater Brandywine applicants will go through a pre-hire screening and training process. As a part of this process, all employees will go through their FBI and state clearances before working. Any issues discovered during this process will be reviewed by state law. Applicants for staff positions and high-access volunteer positions are also required to minimally provide 3 references for the YMCA to review. During the interview process hiring managers will use the Y-USA hiring guide for a minimum of 3 behaviorally-based questions that fit the job role. Hiring managers work in tandem with their HR partner to ensure that applications, references, and the hiring process are completed fairly and equitably.

All staff and volunteers must also go through new checks on a biannual basis, or if they're returning to the Y after a 90-day break or transferring into a licensed program. Our members and guests are also screened through a Raptor system that integrates with The National Sex Offender Registry.


The YMCA of Greater Brandywine requires all employees and all high-access volunteers to complete annual Child Abuse prevention training as a part of their training program. This training teaches staff and employees how to recognize red-flag behavior, rule-breaking, abuse, and how to respond. The training is intended to provide staff and volunteers with an increased awareness and understanding regarding abuse prevention. As an organization that strives to maintain safe spaces for all, ensuring that staff can recognize and respond when needed is a key component of our program.


Should any allegation arise, the YMCA will proactively work with the authorities and all parties involved to respond in a prompt, thorough and empathetic manner.

For reporting an issue that happened within the YMCA of Greater Brandywine you can reach out directly to the program director, branch executive director or file a Grievance or Concern


This web-based platform identifies unwanted visitors instantly by scanning driver’s licenses and state-issued ID’s and keeps unwanted guests from entering our YMCA. If a potential threat is identified, the Raptor system will send an instant alert to designated management staff. If necessary, law enforcement will be notified.


The YMCA of Greater Brandywine maintains a zero-tolerance policy toward child abuse and child endangerment, and staff are to report any questionable behavior they see, or violations of their Employee Code of Conduct.


To ensure we continuously uphold the highest standards in child safety and protection, we have developed internal teams that routinely audit random high-risk areas daily at all locations and utilize the Praesidium assessment tool developed by Praesidium, a consulting firm that specializes in abuse prevention and risk management.

What Can You Do to Help?

The Five Days of Action is a weeklong campaign to raise awareness and inspire adults to take action to protect children from sexual abuse.

The YMCA of Greater Brandywine encourages adults and organizations to join in marking this special week as Chester County comes together to make the community a safer place for children to live, learn, and play. With summer right around the corner—when children gather for activities and camps, it is a wonderful time to bring attention to the simple ways we can all make the children in our community safer. 

During the Five Days of Action, we will be engaging these critical steps of prevention, KNOW. SEE. RESPONDknow how abuse happens, see the warning signs, and respond as a safe adult.


What do I do if I believe a child is being abused?

Information provided by Darkness to Light

  • You do not need to have proof that abuse is occurring to make a report, only reasonable suspicion. Reasonable suspicion means that you have witnessed maltreatment or boundary violations, either in the child or adult, or both. Or, you have received a disclosure from a child about abuse, neglect, or boundary violations towards them. 
  • Child sexual abuse reports should be made to the police and/or state child protective services.  
  • Contact the Darkness to Light Helpline at 866-FOR-LIGHT or text LIGHT to 741741 to have questions answered by trained counselors at no charge.  

What does KNOW.SEE.RESPOND mean?

KNOW: Knowing the facts about child sexual abuse can help adults better understand what to look for and how to prevent it. As parents, caregivers, and trusted adults to the young people in our lives, we play an important role in protecting them from abuse. Learn more about the different types of abuse, the signs and how you can help at

SEE: Media and technology are at the center of children’s lives every day. With more of life happening online, what catches their attention isn’t always what’s best for them. As a parent or caregiver, you may SEE a child interacting with media daily, and you can be equipped with the tools and resources to make sure any environment (including online) is free from any abuse. Learn more.

RESPOND: How can you RESPOND to the call to help prevent child sexual abuse? As a parent or caregiver, you may know it’s important to talk about it, but you may not know what or when to say it. Committee for Children has created the Hot Chocolate Talk campaign, packing decades of research into easy-to-use guides to help you begin these crucial conversations – at any age, from toddler to teen. Learn more and empower your child to report and refuse sexual abuse.

Get Help and Support

Report Child Abuse
Local CPS Office: PA ChildLine 800.932.0313 or online at
Report a Concern | U.S. Center for SafeSport
YMCA of Greater Brandywine | Grievance or Concern 

Other Resources

Learn more about steps everyone can take to help create a culture of safety and prevent child sexual abuse:

Resources For Survivors
Learn more about organizations providing support to survivors of child sexual abuse and their families:

The YMCA of Greater Brandywine is committed to the highest level of professional integrity and conduct that supports a workplace that is free of illegal and unethical behavior.

Staff and volunteers alike are expected to adhere to the policies, procedures, and code of conduct that clarify their ethical obligations and responsibilities.