MBF Child Safety Matters®

About This Program

Target Population: Children in grades K-5, their parents/guardians, and personnel at the children's school

For children/adolescents ages: 4 – 11

For parents/caregivers of children ages: 4 – 11

Program Overview

MBF Child Safety Matters® is designed to be a comprehensive, primary prevention education program based on polyvictimization research. It was developed by the Monique Burr Foundation for Children (MBF). The program is available to elementary schools and organizations partnering with elementary schools to educate and empower students, school personnel, and parents with information and universal Safety Rules and strategies to prevent many types of victimization. The curriculum is designed to be practical and easy for schools to implement.

MBF Child Safety Matters covers bullying, cyberbullying, four types of child abuse (physical, sexual, emotional and neglect), digital abuse, and other digital dangers in two classroom lessons ranging from 35-55 minutes (or in 4 shorter lessons). The program also provides reinforcement materials and activities for students, parents, and schools.

The CEBC has also reviewed MBF Teen Safety Matters® and it can be accessed here.

Program Goals

The goals of MBF Child Safety Matters® are:

  • Students will have increased knowledge about various types of abuse and victimization.
  • Students will recognize and respond appropriately to Red Flags and unsafe situations.
  • Students will demonstrate an increase in skilled response to unsafe situations using 5 Safety Rules.
  • Students will identify Safe Adults and demonstrate good communication skills with Safe Adults.
  • Students will demonstrate increased communication with parents/guardians regarding their safety.
  • Personnel at the school students attend will have increased capacity to educate and protect children and provide for their safety.
  • Parents of the students will have increased capacity to educate and protect children and provide for their safety.

Logic Model

The program representative did not provide information about a Logic Model for MBF Child Safety Matters®.

Essential Components

The essential components of MBF Child Safety Matters® include:

  • The foundation of the program is the 5 Safety Rules that are designed to apply to any unsafe situation.
  • Materials for implementing programs in schools are available via grade level kits or school bundles.
  • Lessons provided to students sequentially in individual classrooms (vs. groups or assemblies) using turnkey scripts and PowerPoints.
  • MBF Child Safety Matters addresses:
    • General safety and prevention, including knowing general safety procedures, calling 9-1-1, knowing their own and their family's personal contact information, etc.
    • Grades K-2: Abuse with words and abuse to your body
    • Grades 3-5: 4 types of abuse including physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect
    • Sexual abuse, including discussing healthy relationships, who perpetrators may be (adults, other children, family, or others known to the child or parents), safe vs. unsafe touching, private body parts, and boundaries
    • Safe vs. unsafe strangers
    • Safe Adults, Safety Buddies (grades K-2) and Safety Friends (grades 3-5)
    • Neglect, including witnessing domestic violence in the home
    • All types of bullying
    • Cyberbullying
    • Digital abuse and other digital dangers
    • Digital citizenship
  • Program materials include:
    • Curriculum Book with Facilitator Manual
    • Facilitator Flash Drive with Scripts and Classroom PowerPoints as well as additional materials and resources
    • Parent Opt-Out and Welcome Forms
    • Parent Information and Activity Sheets
    • Safe Adult Bookmarks
    • Student reinforcement items (varies by grade)
    • Classroom Posters
    • 3-year online access to password-protected Facilitator Portal
    • Safety Rules Banner
    • Facilitator Tote Bag
  • Digital-only option available
  • Parents are encouraged to engage with students after each lesson:
    • An Opt-Out/Welcome Form provided to parents prior to student participation in MBF Child Safety Matters
    • Parent Information and Activity Sheet provided after each lesson:
      • Discusses what their child learned
      • Gives tips on how to continue the conversation and student learning
      • Provides an activity for the parent to do with their child to reinforce the topics and Safety Rules
      • Access given to parents for a website and free mobile app with additional information and resources, including free online trainings about topics covered in program lessons
  • Reinforcement materials for classrooms and students also provided at the end of each lesson to:
    • Continue student learning
    • Foster communication
    • Reinforce the 5 Safety Rules
  • Discounts are available for districts or states where multiple sites will use programs, allowing reproduction of materials which will result in substantial cost savings.

Program Delivery

Child/Adolescent Services

MBF Child Safety Matters® directly provides services to children/adolescents and addresses the following:

  • Children in grades K-5 who may be unaware of what constitutes abuse, neglect, and other types of victimization, how to respond, or how to talk to adults to help keep them safe.

Parent/Caregiver Services

MBF Child Safety Matters® directly provides services to parents/caregivers and addresses the following:

  • Parent/guardian of a child in grades K-5 who may not be aware of how best to keep their child safe or talk to them about personal safety
Services Involve Family/Support Structures:

This program involves the family or other support systems in the individual's treatment: Personnel at the school where MBF Child Safety Matters is implemented are shown a PowerPoint presentation containing the information the students learn and are welcome to do the online training (see training section below).

Recommended Intensity:

The length of the lessons vary based on the grade level: Kindergarten – Two 35-minute lessons (or four 20-minute lessons); 1st Grade – Two 40-minute lessons (or four 20-minute lessons); 2nd Grade – Two 45-minute lessons (or four 25-minute lessons); 3rd Grade – Two 50-minute lessons (or four 25-minute lessons); 4th Grade – Two 55-minute lessons (or four 30-minute lessons); 5th Grade – Two 55-minute lessons (or four 30-minute lessons)

Recommended Duration:

Lessons should be presented anywhere from 1 to 6 weeks apart; however, they can be presented within any time frame appropriate for the classroom and allowed by teachers. The curriculum is intended to be presented every year with the content in grade-specific lessons increasing in complexity and reinforcing previously taught concepts as well.

Delivery Setting

This program is typically conducted in a(n):

  • School Setting (Including: Day Care, Day Treatment Programs, etc.)


MBF Child Safety Matters® includes a homework component:

Students learn to identify Safe Adults, at a minimum, one in the home and one outside the home. Each student receives two Safe Adult Bookmarks to personalize and give to their Safe Adults to educate them regarding the 5 Safety Rules and how to protect the student if they come to them.


MBF Child Safety Matters® has materials available in languages other than English:

Haitian Creole, Portuguese, Spanish

For information on which materials are available in these languages, please check on the program's website or contact the program representative (contact information is listed at the bottom of this page).

Resources Needed to Run Program

The typical resources for implementing the program are:

Facilitators will need a computer or laptop and a projector with speakers to present PowerPoints with embedded videos.

Manuals and Training

Prerequisite/Minimum Provider Qualifications

Facilitators typically have a 4-year degree in a human service or education field and at least one year of experience working with children, or a combination of education and experience.

The most important requirement is that a facilitator be comfortable discussing with students the sensitive topics contained in the program.

Manual Information

There is a manual that describes how to deliver this program.

Training Information

There is training available for this program.

Training Contact:
Training Type/Location:

Live, onsite training is available for schools or organizations partnering with schools to provide the program.

Online training is available for anyone wishing to be trained to implement the program or learn more about it.

Number of days/hours:

3-4 hours

Implementation Information

Pre-Implementation Materials

There are no pre-implementation materials to measure organizational or provider readiness for MBF Child Safety Matters®.

Formal Support for Implementation

There is formal support available for implementation of MBF Child Safety Matters® as listed below:

Support is available to assist with beginning prevention in the schools as well as ongoing support to assist with implementation, coaching, evaluation, partnering with schools, and more. Support is available via email or phone.

Fidelity Measures

There are no fidelity measures for MBF Child Safety Matters®.

Implementation Guides or Manuals

There are implementation guides or manuals for MBF Child Safety Matters® as listed below:

There is a manual that is made available to trained Facilitators.

Implementation Cost

There are no studies of the costs of MBF Child Safety Matters®.

Research on How to Implement the Program

Research has not been conducted on how to implement MBF Child Safety Matters®.

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research

Bright, M. A., Sayedul Huq, M., Patel, S., Miller, M. D., & Finkelhor, D. (2020). Child Safety Matters: Randomized control trial of a school-based, child victimization prevention curriculum. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 37(1–2), 538–556. https://doi.org/10.1177/0886260520909185

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 1,176


  • Age — Not specified
  • Race/Ethnicity — Not specified
  • Gender — Not specified
  • Status — Participants were children in kindergarten through 5th grade.

Location/Institution: 72 classrooms in 12 Florida schools across eight counties

Summary: (To include basic study design, measures, results, and notable limitations)
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the knowledge acquisition of children who received the Monique Burr Foundation's Child Safety Matters (MBF Child Safety Matters®) curriculum. Schools were matched in pairs and randomly assigned to receive MBF Child Safety Matters® or be in a wait-list control. Measures utilized include the Child-Report Survey of Knowledge of Potentially Risky Situations. Results indicate that children who received MBF Child Safety Matters® increased their knowledge about potentially risky situations, and this knowledge was sustained over 7 months to the follow-up assessment. Children in the control schools did not have similar gains. Limitations include lack of reliable and valid measures, lack of observations of control classrooms, and Grade 5 classes did not complete follow-up.

Length of controlled postintervention follow-up: Approximately 7 months (excluding 5th grade classes).

Additional References

No reference materials are currently available for MBF Child Safety Matters®.

Contact Information

Stacy Pendarvis, MSW, MA
Title: Vice President of Programs
Agency/Affiliation: Monique Burr Foundation for Children, Inc.
Website: mbfpreventioneducation.org
Phone: (904) 642-0210

Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: May 2020

Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: January 2019

Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: April 2015