Kidpower’s philosophy in providing services is to look for what people can do rather than what they cannot do. We have learned that it is crucial to avoid making assumptions based on how our students look when we start. This article uses many real stories to illustrate valuable lessons from our experience teaching Kidpower personal safety skills to people with disabilities and special needs.

Saying STOP with your hands!

We can protect people with special needs and disabilities from most bullying, violence and abuse by understanding what they can do to protect their personal safety and adapting to meet their specific needs. The following article includes excerpts from “The Kidpower Book for Caring Adults: Self Protection, Confidence, Personal Safety, and Advocacy for Young People.” As with all our materials, the names and personal details about our students have been changed to protect their confidentiality.
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Kidpower Founder and Executive Irene van der Zande is a master at teaching safety through stories and practices and at inspiring others to do the same. Her child protection and personal safety expertise has been featured by USA Today, CNN, Today Moms, the LA Times, and The Wall Street Journal. Publications include: cartoon-illustrated Kidpower Safety Comics and Kidpower Teaching Books curriculum; Bullying: What Adults Need to Know and Do to Keep Kids Safe; the Relationship Safety Skills Handbook for Teens and Adults; Earliest Teachable Moment: Personal Safety for Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers; and The Kidpower Book for Caring Adults: Personal Safety, Self-Protection, Confidence, and Advocacy for Young People.

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