A Child’s Voice Child Advocacy Center, Inc., a non-profit working in the Alcovy Judicial Circuit, has made a donation to the child advocacy centers serving Houston, Texas and plans to do similarly for those affected by Hurricane Irma in Georgia. A Child’s Voice is an accredited member of the National Children’s Alliance, the network of child advocacy centers encompassing 822 centers throughout the United States. A Child’s Voice, in partnership with law enforcement entities, the Department of Family and Children Services (DFCS) and other local partners, provides services to children for whom an allegation of sexual abuse or severe physical abuse has been made. These services include a forensic interview by a specially trained interviewer, a forensic medical exam provided by a trained Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE), and family support services. These services allow children to tell their story, receive needed care, and begin to heal from abuse in a neutral, child friendly environment. Additionally, partnerships with law enforcement and DFCS helps reduce additional traumatization to children by preventing their having to tell their story multiple times as well as ensuring investigative agencies have the information necessary to conduct their investigation.
Twelve CAC centers in and around the major areas of destruction in Houston are closed and unable to conduct normal daily activities due to Hurricane Harvey. “Some of their facilities have even been turned into a 24-hour staging area for law enforcement and first responders doing search and rescue,” according to Andrew H. Agatston, CEO, Children’s Advocacy Centers of Georgia. He went on to say, “…even doubling as a shelter for some displaced Houstonians despite being flooded in some parts of the building itself.”
Multiple advocacy centers in Southern Georgia were affected by Hurricane Irma. The Children’s Advocacy Centers of Georgia (CACGA) are assessing damage to these centers that are currently unable to serve local communities. A Child’s Voice Child Advocacy Center, Inc. is planning to aid the efforts of CACGA.
A Child’s Voice Child Advocacy Center, Inc. is located in Social Circle, GA, centrally between the counties of Walton and Newton which it services. The center was established in 2006, began seeing clients in 2009, and moved to its permanent location in Social Circle in 2013. A Child’s Voice typically sees around 200 cases a year, and is on track to see closer to 250 in 2017, a 29% increase.