CPTCSA as a learning institute


The goal of the Learning Institute is to provide quality information and practical professional skills for the prevention and treatment of child sexual abuse, the victims, and the young offenders with a focus on social workers.

Comprehensive training courses are provided by professionals for child protection professionals through

  • Annual Summer Institute sessions
  • Quarterly courses
  • Specific training topics for requesting agencies

The Learning Institute is a concept and not a place.
Sessions are conducted at different venues nationwide and implemented in collaboration with other disciplines from local and international fields.

The CPTCSA is authorized to grant CPE units to social workers

The Learning Institute is a natural developmental progression of our present advocacy , research, and training services (annual Summer Institute) The Learning Institute is a self-sustaining and funding development program.

Possible topics include:

  • Any issue related to sexual abuse-focused treatment for survivors and young offenders (individual or groups)
  • Case management of child sexual abuse
  • Social work counseling
  • Supervision and mentoring of child sexual abuse cases served by social workers
  • Issues related to vicarious trauma when working with sexual abuse of children
  • Psycho-educational group work with parents of survivors

Courses will be offered within a semester time-frame in order to allow maximum direct teaching and mentored practicuum time. CPE credits are awarded.

Sample course offerings:

Life-Skills Training Series

Life-skills is a group of violence prevention skill-sets that all children need. These include decision making, problem solving, creative thinking, critical thinking, effective communication, interpersonal relationship skills, self- awareness, empathy building, coping with emotions, and coping with stress. This course places these skills within the context of safety from physical, emotional, and sexual harm. The guiding principles within Life Skills are that:

  • Skills must be relevant to concerns of target children and youth;
  • Skills have to be learned by practice;
  • Skills must be age appropriate;
  • Methodologies must be learner-centered;
  • Peer leadership is a component for work with adolescents;
  • Skills must be implemented in the long term, over a period of time;
  • Skills need to be designed as part of a sequential and unified program; and
  • Skills are taught in a mutually reinforcing and supporting learning environment.

CPTCSA offers courses that focus on specific populations and the life-skills relevant to them.

1) Life Skills for Child Protection – Children at Risk. Personal Safety is a major Life Skill empowering children to assert their right to feel safe at all times. When children do not feel safe, most other rights of our children, including education, play and leisure, are minimized. Children who have been abused or experienced any form of violence (including witnessing domestic violence) are at-risk, especially boys, of developing violent behaviors.

Personal safety is taught with a focus on violence prevention.

  • Personal Safety teaches children that their body belongs only to them and nobody has the right to touch them in a way they do not like or understand.
  • Personal Safety teaches children to understand their emotions to help them keep safe, using fear and anger in positive ways.
  • Personal Safety teaches assertiveness skills, helping children to stick up for their own rights without violating the rights of others.
  • Personal Safety builds the support system of each child, including the family, church, school, community, and friends.
  • Personal Safety builds the self-esteem of each child to empower them to practice assertiveness skills for their own protection.
  • Personal Safety builds empathy for one another.
  • Personal Safety prevents today’s children from being tomorrow’s offender.
  • Personal Safety teaches children that only the offender is to blame for any inappropriate sexual touch.

2) Life Skills for the young sexual offender. Children and youth develop sexual behaviors from how they feel and what they learn. Children within certain environments are at risk to become sexual offenders, from being victimized themselves to unsupervised curiosity. Children with sexual misbehavior need life skills that include:

  • Understanding sexuality in general and talking about their own feelings and knowledge.
  • Understanding the law and the legal system.
  • Accepting responsibility for one’s own behavior.
  • Building empathy, especially for their victim(s).
  • Understanding and handling emotions, especially anger management.
  • Decision-making in general and with a focus on problem solving related to sexual feelings and behaviors.
  • Positive communication, both giving and receiving.
  • Understanding triggers that lead to sexual offense and how to stop the cycle with impulse control and other relapse prevention skills.
  • Building support systems for supervision.
  • Dealing with victimization experience for those children/youth who have been victimized.

3) Life Skills for children in conflict with the law. When children do not feel safe, the result is often linked to social problems including drug and alcohol abuse, prostitution, truancy, running away from home, suicide and suicide ideation, and criminal behavior. Life skills for children who are already in the justice system, either incarcerated or in a diversion program, include the same as those in the sexual offending population (see #2) without the focus on sexuality. What this population also needs is a support system, so in addition to a training agenda about skills for the client, the training agenda includes skills for social workers and other support professionals:

  • Understanding the law and the justice system.
  • How to set up, work in, and maintain a multidisciplinary team.

4) Life Skills for victims of child sexual abuse. Personal Safety is a major Life Skill empowering children to assert their right to feel safe at all times. When children do not feel safe, most other rights of our children, including education, play and leisure, are minimized.

  • Personal Safety teaches children that their body belongs only to them and nobody has the right to touch them in a way they do not like or understand.
  • Personal Safety teaches children to understand their emotions to help them keep safe, using fear and anger in positive ways.
  • Personal Safety teaches assertiveness skills, helping children to stick up for their own rights without violating the rights of others.
  • Personal Safety builds the support system of each child, including the family, church, school, community, and friends.
  • Personal Safety builds the self-esteem of each child to empower them to practice assertiveness skills for their own protection.
  • Personal Safety builds empathy for one another.
  • Personal Safety prevents today’s children from being tomorrow’s offender.
  • Personal Safety teaches children that only the offender is to blame for any inappropriate sexual touch.

Children who are victims of sexual abuse will be impacted in different ways. Based on assessment of the individual child, life skills training will be tailored to meet specific needs. The traumagenic dynamics model will be used for assessment. For example, when a child experiences betrayal, the life skills to focus on will be different than when a child experiences powerlessness. While all the life-skills are covered, assessment allows a greater focus on some.