Certificate in Child Protection and Safe Environment

Online & Fully Asynchronous

For anyone who wants to learn how to help keep kids safe

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Program Trailer

President John Garvey introduces the online, fully asynchronous certificate program

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Program Director

Eileen Dombo

Eileen Dombo is Associate Professor, Assistant Dean, and Chair of the Ph.D Program for the National Catholic School of Social Service. She offers her extensive experience to students of the certificate program.

The Child Protection and Safe Environments certificate program, developed by The Catholic Project, is designed for students who wish to study best practices in child protection from a Catholic perspective. It will draw upon existing courses of several schools.

Graduates will be able to:

  • Explain the different dynamics involved in sexual abuse and exploitation, particularly within the Catholic Church;
  • Explain the history and current practice of safe environment programs, particularly within the Catholic Church;
  • Identify the core principles of trauma-informed services;
  • Evaluate policies, programs, and clinical interventions designed to help trauma survivors.
  • Understand the criminal and civil and legal systems and their roles in addressing abuse;
  • Analyze and discuss different child protection programs

This knowledge is urgently needed by the Church and society. Graduates would be well-qualified to be diocesan Victim Assistance Coordinators or Safe Environment Coordinators after its completion.


• TRS 656B / SSS 656C (Jointly Offered): Sexual Abuse and Exploitation

• SSS 655 Social Work Responses to Trauma: Intersections of Policy, Community, and Clinical Practice

• SSS 657 Child Protection: Law and Policy

• An individualized capstone course, allowing the student to apply knowledge gained in the other courses to their field or work.

To apply go to the main application page, select "graduate", and then once you are in the system (with a username and password), select "certificate" and the National Catholic School of Social Service and child protection. You will then need to send an official transcripts from your undergraduate or graduate institution, as well as a resumé.

Find out more about the Certificate in Child Protections and Safe Environment!