Safety Kids, Inc. (S.K.I.) was founded in 1998 to work hand-in-hand with children, parents, law enforcement personnel, and teachers to protect children from abuse, abduction, exploitation, violence, and injury through victimization. The founder worked in crime prevention for children for 17 years before organizing this work as S.K.I.
Safety Kids, Inc. developed a creative, new approach to the issue of personal safety in response to a need for more effective education on prevention. Over 85% of the children who are victimized know the perpetrator; therefore, the concept of stranger danger is ineffective! It puts a child in a position of feeling secure just because he or she knows the person when, in fact, this may actually lead to victimization. Charlie Check-First (the S.K.I. trademarked mascot) replaces that concept and has been readily endorsed by educators and law enforcement personnel. The curriculum for preschool and elementary age children and the materials for parents are highly praised and used in many locations.
A staff of certified elementary teachers, crime prevention practitioners, and others have worked to develop and fine-tune the curriculum to meet the needs of educators, children, and parents. Financial support has been received from a variety of funding sources, while numerous law enforcement agencies and schools offer general support and endorsement.
Diane L. Brown, founder and director of Safety Kids, Inc., has worked on the issue of personal safety for children since 1982. She is a certified International Crime Prevention Specialist through the International Society of Crime Prevention Practitioners. After teaching elementary education for seven years, she created Friends of Child Find, Inc. in Pennsylvania to address the issue of missing children. She has taught personal safety to hundreds of thousands of children and adults, has appeared on numerous television and radio programs, and also worked with Sesame Street Live and the Harlem Globetrotters to present child safety programs. In 1998 she created Safety Kids, Inc. to broaden the scope of child safety and include topics such as abuse, exploitation, and violence.