Welcome to My Body Is My Body Musical Safeguarding Children Programme. It is one of the most successful, positive and fun musical “Body Safety” programmes around. Our programme has been animated so that it can be shared with children in schools, nursery schools and homes. All resources are free to use and share.
The consequences of child maltreatment for the affected child
The consequences of child maltreatment for the affected child and society as a whole are substantial, and education is one of the best ways to prevent this from happening. Our aim is to prevent child abuse with our safeguarding children programme, but if a child is already in an abusive situation, the My Body is My Body Program will give them the knowledge of what to do and whom to turn to so they can try and get some help. Our priority is to reach and educate children and their parents before abuse occurs.
Our international child abuse prevention program contains:
- Full .pdf downloads in several languages
- Six songs to prevent abuse
- Step-by-step instructions for each song
- Ideas to get the children involved
- Signs of abuse to look for
- Lots of useful information
The earlier we can teach children about the subject of “Body Safety”, the better, and I know that this programme works for children from the age of 3, as the programme has been presented to over 2 million children around the world with great success.
The beauty of the My Body Is My Body Programme is that it can be taught by anyone. Social workers, teachers, daycare providers, parents, after-school programme providers, sports club organisers and many more. It is simple, memorable, and opens the channels of communication about the subject of abuse, using our safeguarding children programme which is of the utmost importance.
Songs are also a wonderful way for children to remember the important messages being taught as they are interactive. I am sure you all remember little songs that you were taught as a child. These songs and messages will stay with the children and be a good grounding for future life lessons.
A study which involved children, published in the Journal of Music Therapy, showed that music and learning new songs relate to a more positive self-concept and development of self-esteem, helping children feel better about themselves.
*The Power of Music – University of London
Safeguarding Children – How to use this programme:
Keep it Fun –
The songs are fun, positive animations introduced by a character called Cynthie. This should help you to keep the message simple. Sing along, do hand movements, dance, and make the message memorable.
Keep it Simple –
Young children do not need to know any in-depth details of the abuse. Just give them simple rules:
1. Nobody should be hurting you
2. Nobody should be touching your private parts
3. Nobody should take photos of your private parts
4. If you have a problem, tell somebody
5. Don’t keep secrets if someone is hurting you
6. Tell someone if you are being bullied
Keep it positive –
The main objective is to empower children, so they feel positive about their bodies
and safe in the knowledge that they have someone to talk to if there is a problem.
My Body is My Body (Song 1)
Hello, my name is Cynthie, and today we’re going to do the “My Body Is My Body” Programme. We’re going to sing some songs, have some fun and learn about how to keep safe. You know, our bodies are very special and nobody has the right to hurt us, or touch our private parts or do anything that makes us feel uncomfortable because it is our special body. We’re going to do the first song now, and I want you to sing along with me – it’s called My Body Is My Body."
If It Don't Feel Right - Don't Do it - Song 2
We’re going to have fun with this next song, It has such a great rule to remember… And the rule is – If it don’t feel right – don’t do it !! Now I’m not talking about things like doing your homework, or tidying up your bedroom I’m talking about if someone tries to get you to go somewhere with them and you know it’s not the right thing to do. If it don’t feel right – don’t do it !! Or if someone tries to get you to do something that makes you feel uncomfortable. If it don’t feel right – don’t do it !!"
The "What If" Game - Song 3
Now we are going to play the “What If Game” and in this song we are going to learn what to do if a stranger tries to get you to go with them, or if somebody tries to touch your private parts . Do you know where your private parts are? They are where your underwear or pants cover. Nobody should be touching your private parts apart from when you are very young, Mommy or Daddy will have to wash you there, but you’ll soon learn to do that for yourself. Maybe if you are sick or sore, Mommy or Daddy or a Doctor might have to put some medicine there, but apart from that nobody should ever be touching your private parts. We are also going to learn what to do if someone in our own home or family makes you feel uncomfortable or tries to hurt you. All you’ve got to do in this game is say “NO” so I want you to shout out nice and loud….."
If You've Got A problem - Song 4
It is really important to tell somebody if someone is hurting you or touching your private parts, even if you feel scared or embarrassed you need to be very, very brave and tell someone. There are so many people to tell, Moms, Dads, Grannies, Grandpas, Aunties, Uncles, Teachers, Cousins, Neighbours, parents of your friends, police, nurses and many more people around you. Now if you tell and people don’t believe you, they might even tell you to keep it a secret – but then you go and tell someone else. If they don’t believe you – then you tell someone else and you keep on telling till someone listens to you. Don’t ever, ever give up!!"
Love Is Gentle - Song 5
Let’s talk about love, it’s very important to be loved and people don’t show their love to you by hurting you or doing things that make you feel uncomfortable. People show that they love you by doing things with you like reading books, playing games, having fun, going for walks or maybe showing you how to ride your bicycle. Love is all about sharing and caring for each other. Our parents and carers make sure we are looked after, they feed us, make sure we clean our teeth, and that we have clean clothes to wear and if we are sick they take us to the doctor. It’s very important that we are looked after well so we can grow up healthy, happy and strong."
Say No To Secrets - Song 6
Signs of Child Abuse
Child abuse happens when someone ( adult or child ) – harms a child. It can be physical, sexual or emotional, but can also involve a lack of love, care or attention. Neglect and Emotional Abuse can be just as damaging as Physical and Sexual Abuse, so it is important to watch and be aware of the signs of abuse. The child may be suffering from more than one abuse so the following is just a guideline. If you notice distinct changes in a child’s behaviour make sure you take note to see if any of the following are relevant.
These are indicators of abuse and neglect that you may see in children. If you see any of these indicators or if a child reveals information to you:
1. Remain calm and do not force the child to give information.
2. Comfort the child and thank them for sharing with you then notify your relevant Child Protection Services.
3. Remember a child may only disclose a small portion of information at a time until they see your reaction is calm and supportive.
The following are some signs of abuse.
Signs of physical abuse
* Unusual bruises, welts, burns or fractures
* Bite marks
* Frequent injuries are always explained as accidental
* If an explanation does not match the injury
* Wears long sleeves or other concealing clothing to hide injuries
* Unpleasant, hard to get along with
* Unusually shy, avoids other people
* May be too anxious to please
* Appears to be afraid of parents
* Shows little or no distress at being separated from parents
Signs of neglect
* Poor hygiene, dirty hair, body odour
* Clothes inappropriate for the weather
* In need of medical or dental care
* Often tired, no energy, lethargic
* Begs or steals food
* Frequent lateness or absence from school
* Defiant behaviour
* Low self-esteem
Signs of emotional abuse
Signs may be less obvious than in other forms of abuse, behaviour is probably the best indication.
* Withdrawal from friends and social activities
* Frequent lateness or absence from school
* Loss of self-esteem
* Defiant behaviour
* Changes in school performance
Signs of sexual abuse
* Torn stained or bloody underclothing
* Experiences pain or itching in genital areas
* Has a sexually transmitted infection
* Sexual behaviour or knowledge that is inappropriate for the child’s age group. *Inappropriate sexual touching of other children
*Abrupt change in behaviour
*Extreme reluctance to be touched in any way
Most Asked Questions (by the children)
Question: Why do people hurt kids?
Answer: There are several reasons why people hurt children, some people were abused as children themselves and carry on the cycle of hurting others. Some people have drinking, drug or anger problems and that is why they hurt children. The main thing to remember is that it is wrong to hurt children so that is why you always need to tell someone, so you can get help.
Question: Why do people touch children’s private parts?
Answer: Again there are many reasons why people sexually abuse children, many people that hurt children were abused themselves which is why it is important to tell because these people need help and treatment so they can get better and not hurt children anymore.
Question: What do I do if nobody believes me?
Answer: If you tell someone and they don’t believe you – then tell someone else and keep telling people till someone believes you.
Question: If I do tell, what will happen?
Answer: They will have to report that you are being hurt.
Someone will then come and talk to your family. They will see if it is safe for you to stay at home or if you need to go somewhere else where you can be kept safe.
Question: What do I do if I say NO!! and they don’t stop?
Answer: If they don’t stop when you say no – shout out very loud if someone is there that can help you, or you know there are people around that will come and help. If nobody is there, then go and tell someone as soon as it is safe to do so.
Question: What do I do if they tell me that they will hurt me or someone in my family if I tell?
Answer: People who abuse children do not want other people to know what they are doing, so they may try and threaten you or someone in your family and tell you to keep secrets. You need to be very brave and tell someone about your problem.
Question: What do I do if it is my brother or sister that is abusing me?
Answer: Tell your parents and if they do not listen to you tell someone at school or from the list of people we have discussed.
Question: Will they be angry If I Tell?
Answer: Not always, but yes they may be angry, but you still need to be brave and tell so that the person will stop hurting you or touching your private parts.