Supporting You, Supporting Youth

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Who is this training for?

All adult volunteers who work with youth in Extension programs.

All Wisconsin 4-H volunteers are required to report incidents of sexual misconduct that take place in Extension programs and complete training on how to report concerns. The Supporting You, Supporting Youth training module will help you learn about how to support youth through any incidents you encounter and report those incidents.

Training Details

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Mobile-friendly—This interactive series adjusts for any device. It works best on a computer or laptop.

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Sound—Some sections include short videos with sound. Closed captions are available.

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Accessibility—Select “Click to hear this page read out loud” at the top of each screen for narration. The training is also accessible for most screen readers.

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Time—Plan for each module to take about 10 minutes. If you need to stop, pick up where you left off.

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Navigation—To start, click the green bar below. Each module builds on the one before. The progress bar at the top of the page tells you where you are in the training.

Start the Training

Supporting You, Supporting Youth includes one training module, taken annually.
Click the “Start the Training” button when you are ready.

Questions about Reporting

The questions and answers below contain more information about the reporting requirement.

Q. What do I need to report?

A. Sexual misconduct. Sexual misconduct includes the following activities that occurred or may be occurring in Wisconsin 4-H.

  • Sexual Harassment: Sexual harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, unwelcome requests for sexual acts in exchange for something, and unwelcome physical behavior or words that are sexual.
  • Sexual Assault: Sexual assault is sexual contact without consent. Consent is words or clear actions that openly show a person who is competent to give informed consent freely agrees to the sexual contact. Minors aged 15 and younger are not legally able to give consent. It is prohibited for sexual contact to take place between 4-H adult volunteers and youth who participate in 4-H programs.
  • Stalking: Stalking is a course of conduct that causes a person to reasonably suffer serious emotional distress or fear for the safety of others.
  • Dating or Domestic Violence: Dating or domestic violence is a pattern of coercive and abusive action used by one person in a relationship to gain power and control over  another person. It can take many forms, including physical violence, sexual abuse, coercion, threats, intimidation, isolation, or emotional abuse.
  • Sexual Exploitation: Attempting, taking, or threatening to take nonconsensual sexual advantage of another person. This includes, but is not limited to taking inappropriate pictures of another person without their knowledge or threatening to distribute photos to force someone else to engage in sexual activity.
  • Retaliation: Harmful action(s) against someone who has taken steps in opposition of acts of sexual misconduct (e.g., threats about being removed from the program if they report possible sexual harassment).

To read the full definitions of these words, you can review the UW-Madison Policy on Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence,

Q. Why do I need to report?

A. When young people experience sexual misconduct, it can have a negative impact on their wellbeing, including their mental, physical, and emotional health. For example, young people who experience sexual misconduct are more likely to have symptoms of depression, anxiety, or post-traumatic stress. They may also start to struggle in their classes or after-school activities and may not feel safe continuing to attend youth programs.

A federal law called Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 includes requirements for reporting sexual misconduct. Adults who work with youth in federally funded educational programs, including volunteers, are required to report concerns about sexual misconduct.  Wisconsin 4-H and other youth serving programs in Extension fall under this law.

Q. Where should I report concerns?

A. You should contact your local educator about concerns regarding possible sexual misconduct and other issues that may occur in Wisconsin 4-H. They will forward the concern to the staff who are trained to investigate these types of concerns. If your local educator is not available or you would prefer not to report to them for any reason, you must fill out this form,

Q. The form you pointed me to at the link mentions it is for campus incidents? Can I still use that form if I am not on a university campus or if I am not in Madison?

A. Yes. You must report concerns regardless of where the program took place. Remember, Extension staff members are trained to help you with reporting. If you prefer not to use the form, you must report the concern to your local educator.

Q. What should I do if I am not sure if I need to report?

A. If in doubt, report! Extension staff will help you work through the issue and help you with required reporting. You do not need to be certain an incident happened to report concerns.

Q. What happens if I hear about an abuse or harassment situation secondhand?

A. You may see behavior that violates Extension’s abuse and harassment policies. Other times, you may hear about it secondhand. For example:

  • A youth talks to you about a concern
  • A youth hints that abuse is happening in their home
  • A volunteer tells you about a concern
  • You hear a rumor that something may have happened

Report what you learned secondhand, especially in cases of sexual misconduct. Remember, if in doubt, report!

Q. What should I do if a young person asks me not to tell anyone else about an unsafe situation?

A. A youth may ask you to keep a secret about something they told you. However, confidentiality is not an option in cases of sexual misconduct, child abuse, and neglect. To address worries, Extension staff and volunteers can tell the youth or their parent/guardian:

  • Your safety is important. Volunteers are required to report this to keep youth safe. The university does not allow retaliation against anyone who reports misconduct.
  • Your privacy is important. The university will keep the information as private as possible. Relevant information

Q. What happens after a report is made?

A. Staff from the UW-Madison Sexual Misconduct Response Resource and Response Program will reach out to individuals who may be involved in the situation. They will help determine if sexual misconduct took place and assist individuals who may have been victims of sexual misconduct with resources if they are interested in that information.

The youth and their parent/guardian are not required to respond. The Sexual Misconduct Resource and Response Program will always prioritize the youth’s safety.

Who to contact with questions about Title IX Reporting:

For more information on the UW-Madison Policy on Sexual Harassment and Sexual Violence,

Staff Resources for Supporting You, Supporting Youth

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