#ShineALight Newsletter

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

2019 marks Childhood’s 20th year in the United States as we continue our mission to end violence, sexual abuse and exploitation of children. A UN accredited NGO, we leverage our roles as a funder, advocate and thought leader, to develop solutions like the #EyesWideOpen advocacy initiative, to expand our reach.  

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Today we are proud to present the first of its kind report, “Out of the Shadows: Shining light on response to child sexual abuse exploitation - a 40 country benchmarking index.” These 40 countries represent 70% of the children in the world. The Index was developed by The Economist Intelligence Unit with the support of Childhood USA, the Oak Foundation, the Carlson Family Foundation and the participation of many international experts. It was first previewed at a High-Level Meeting at the UN on October 3rd following keynotes by HM Queen Silvia of Sweden, the Deputy Secretary General of the UN, Amina Mohammed, other leaders and Childhood partners.

This year, in addition to the Index, Childhood USA will co-chair with the CEO of Zain, Scott Gegenheimer, the ITU UNESCO Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development Working Group on Child Safety Online.

Additionally we are planning several events in New York and other cities in the US to mark our 20th anniversary and mobilize support for the programs we fund in the US and internationally. We hope you will join our events and the 20th Childhood Anniversary ThankYou Gala and support our work.

With this letter we also want to share with you some of our accomplishments in 2018:

We partnered with Carolina Herrera, to create Childhood inspired “Be Happy” bracelets that were sent as a holiday greeting to Herrera’s partners and clients together with the Childhood bracelets.

For the fourth year we joined forces with the West Harlem Development Corporation to celebrate the holiday season and shared prevention resources with 700 parents and children from the West Harlem community. Childhood USA partners, Ravensburger donated 700 toys and BonBongave gift certificates to the drawing competition awardees.

Earlier in December our Managing Director of Programs and Policy, Nicole Epps, taught a Social Impact class about Childhood USA’s work at the University of Pennsylvania.


At the invitation of the government of Abu Dhabi, Childhood USA joined a two-day Interfaith Dialogue on Child Dignity Online. Religious leaders and international experts, government and UN system representatives discussed the risks the internet can bring to their communities and how faith-based groups can play an important role in the prevention of violence against children online. 

September - October
On October 3rd, at the 2018 Childhood ThankYou Gala, with the participation of HM Queen Silvia of Sweden and HRH Princess Madeleine, we celebrated 2018 ThankYou Awardees, champions for children’s rights: Marta Santos Pais, Special Representative of the UN Secretary General, Baroness Joanna Shields, Founder of WeProtect, Hugh Evans, founder of the Global Poverty Project and special recognition of CNN’s  Freedom Project and its founder, Tony Maddox.

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Childhood USA was invited to join the prestigious ITU/UNESCO Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development co-chaired by President Kagame of Rwanda and Carlos Slim Helu, and with the heads of ITU and UNESCO as vice chairs. Childhood USA board member and CEO of Verizon, Hans Vestberg, also became a new commissioner.

Technology for Awareness and Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse 
at the New York Stock Exchange; SCN Corporate Connect’s Jane King interviewed J. Rubinstein and Teplum Market’s CEO Vincent Molinari about the role of technology and media in protection of children from sexual abuse, violence and exploitation. The Stewards of Children Mobile App and NetClean were discussed. 

Childhood USA with its new Board Member, Hans Vestberg, CEO of Verizon, hosted a Roundtable on ICT and Child Security at Verizon HQ. This brainstorming session’s key objective was to engage decision-makers, regulators and operators in prioritizing child safety online. 

In collaboration with the Mt. Sinai Adolescent Health Center, led by Dr. Angela Diaz (member of the Childhood USA Scientific Advisory Group), on March 22-23, Childhood USA co-hosted a two-day scientific conference, “Ending Violence Against Children: Developing a roadmap to healthy childhood and adolescence.” The conference featured 60+ speakers, leaders, scientists, academics and practitioners and was attended by over 600 participants.

As a board member of the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children, Childhood USA together with Ericsson organized the Private sector Roundtable at the End Violence Against Children Solutions Summit in Stockholm. Leaders of 14 international companies met with the Executive Director of UNICEF, Henrietta Fore, the Deputy Secretary General of the UN, Amina Mohammed, Minister Åsa Regner and Kurt Ekert, CEO of Carlson Wagonlit Travel.

CNN Freedom Project - Solutions to End Human Trafficking meeting in Rome featured Childhood’s J. Rubinstein with government and human rights experts from Europe and Africa, to discuss the issue and the need for multi-sectorial solutions to combat human trafficking. Richard Quest moderated the meeting that was aired on CNN International.

And more importantly...

In addition to all these activities, we supported 9 projects across the US that provided direct and integrative services for children and families impacted by violence, displacement, sexual abuse and exploitation. In the US, N. Epps is leading the work of the National Coalition Against Child Sexual Abuse as the Co-chair of the Policy Committee. Together with their partners, the Coalition is engaged in the development of the first standardized Best Practice guidelines for prevention of child sexual abuse and exploitation in youth serving organizations. 

All this work wouldn’t have been possible without the support of our Board of Directors, partners, donors and you. 

On behalf of the children and families we serve, 

THANK YOU ALL for your continued support!

Childhood USA Team