SAFE Screening Applicants for Effectiveness

Guidelines to Prevent Child Molestation in Mentoring and Youth-Serving Organizations

How can we best screen volunteers to ensure the safety of children? This book includes the latest in child molestation research, wisdom from decades of experience with screening volunteers, and recommendations from leading experts on child exploitation.

160 pages. ©2006.
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Reader Reviews for this Book

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Review posted September 11, 2018


The information in this book is very useful for youth serving agencies who are needing to set up or enforce policies to keep kids safe in your organization. Good concrete information. A good read for even organizations that already have strong policies in place.


Review posted April 25, 2018


I run a mentor program and this book has been invaluable. I am very much looking forward to attending a training based on this book. Having not come from a background in which I would screen applicants, I must say that I have found this book to be a massive resource. Some of the information is common sense, sure, but common sense isn't always so common. If you are in a position where you much work to protect children, this book is a must have!


Review posted July 26, 2017


This book had great info on a mentor program we started. It was a tough read because of the eye opening things that are happening to our kids.


Review posted June 20, 2017


I am in charge of placing volunteers at my program and until I read this book it was just clear them of communicable diseases and get them placed. Now, I will be urging our board to make background checks and other screenings required. This is a powerful book, I highly recommend it.

Mr. Bizjak

Review posted December 7, 2015


This book was interesting. I never thought about this aspect before in terms of education.


Review posted November 25, 2015


This book provides insights and information. A must read for any hiring staff in a non-profit organization, school systems, or sports organizations.


Review posted October 29, 2015


I work for an agency that provides a child sexual abuse prevention training called Stewards of Children. This is a great resource when working with agencies that want to improve their screening process for both staff and volunteers. I found the section on the difference between name-background checks and fingerprint-based checks very useful. I would highly recommended taking the SAFE training as well.

Sara Muzechenko

Review posted October 28, 2015


This book offered a great overview of the necessary skills needed to understand what types of individuals target youth while working in mentoring positions. I was able to attend a training provided by Friends for youth which elaborated on this book. Defiantly worth the read if you are working for an organization who works with youth.


Review posted September 16, 2015


This book provides useful information and tools to help build and maintain a safe volunteer program for the youth housed in our correctional facility. The application and interview samples within the book are a great resource!


Review posted August 10, 2015


This book is a great reference and an absolute must for organizations that work with children and youth. It reinforces some principals I had already learned but also shares lots of information and resources that are new to me. It is very accessible and easy to use!


Review posted June 15, 2015


This is a must have resource for any youth serving organization. It takes a comprehensive approach to preventing infiltration of child predators - from recognizing predators by understanding their mindset and tactics, to a variety of prevention strategies and resources, to legal advice and how to respond to misconduct. It also includes guidelines for creating applications, behavioral guidelines, questionnaires, staff training tips, etc.


Review posted June 1, 2015


As a new volunteer manager, I found this book to be very helpful in my review of our screening processes. I particularly appreciated practical information like sample forms, tools, case studies and hypothetical situations. Also, the section that validates gut reactions ("informed intuition") was affirming.


Review posted May 11, 2015


As a child abuse intervention center, this book was very helpful in making sure we are being dilligent in covering our bases, particularly when it comes to screening volunteers and interns for our program. The fingerprinting and thorough background checking processes provided in the prevention tools portion, were great! A must have for centers.


Review posted April 28, 2015


This book had very helpful information and specific strategies that can be implemented right away in our screening process. Of particular use is the information about the different methods an abuser may try in order to be in direct contact with children. This book recommends multiple safeguards in the volunteer hiring process that go beyond the background check.


Review posted April 3, 2015


good book...sad topic...but it vital information in today's society. a must read for anyone working with youth