Coaching Boys Into Men Prevents Violence Against Women

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Some years ago, in pursuit of its mission of improving quality of life for women and girls, FISA Foundation took a bold step.  Knowing that most sexual or domestic violence is committed by men, the foundation decided to invest in implementing Coaching Boys Into Men (CBIM) in local schools.  CBIM, an evidenced-based program that recruits athletic coaches into talking with their male high school athletes about relationships and respect, had already demonstrated that boys who participated were less likely to be sexually abusive and more likely to intervene if their friends behaved abusively.  According to FISA Foundation, implementation was a challenge – but our region now has the largest implementation in the U.S., reaching thousands of boys.  Now, recent research by Dr. Elizabeth Miler and UPMC Children’s Hospital has been published in JAMA Pediatrics, and the results are extraordinary: “Middle school male athletes who participated in Coaching Boys Into Men were 50% more likely to engage in positive bystander behaviors like intervening when a peer is being disrespectful. The change persisted over time. A year later those athletes were twice as likely to intervene instead of standing by and watching peers act inappropriately or abusively.”

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