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Dove's Nest Blog

Book Supports Plain Community Abuse Awareness

Jeanette Harder had not even received a printed copy of her new book when she learned that 740 fresh-off-the-press copies had been handed out at a conference. 

Dr. Harder, cofounder of Dove’s Nest, authored For the Sake of a Child: Love, Safety, and Abuse in Our Plain Communities (Ridgeway Publishing, 2019) with Allen Hoover, a horse-and-buggy Old Order Mennonite.

Four Ways to Support a Child Survivor of Abuse

1. Address the survivors’ and all other children’s physical and body safety first. Children, youth, and adults should practice consent in all areas of their lives. Consent is an active, voluntary verbal agreement. It means asking before giving a hug. It means listening to a “no.” It means respecting children’s boundaries and finding ways to connect with them that do not necessarily involve physical interaction. (Dove’s Nest offers a variety of different trainings on healthy boundaries and consent.)

Guidelines for Healthy Relationships

Human warmth, expressed through appropriate touch, can foster a sense of acceptance, belonging, and significance. Inappropriate touch can create feelings of violation, confusion, and isolation, which leave lasting scars. It is the responsibility of staff and volunteers to maintain appropriate boundaries; this is not the responsibility of children, youth, or vulnerable persons.

The following are examples of ways in which staff and volunteers can show warmth to children, youth, or vulnerable persons while protecting their own integrity.

6 Ways for Safer Sunday School This Fall

By Anna Groff

In addition to ordering Sunday school curriculum and buying supplies for classrooms, take a few moments to consider steps to ensure safety for the Sunday school students at your church this fall. Equipping teachers with the information and tools they need ahead of time can go a long way in supporting a healthy environment for all. Dove’s Nest is here to serve your church. 

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