Child Advocacy Center

Child Advocacy Center Services:

To understand what a Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) is, you must understand what children face without one. Without a CAC, the child may end up having to tell the worst story of his or her life over and over again, to doctors, cops, lawyers, therapists, investigators, judges, and others. They may have to talk about that traumatic experience in a police station where they think they might be in trouble, or may be asked the wrong questions by a well-meaning teacher or other adult that could hurt the case against the abuser.

When police or child protective services believe a child is being abused, the child is brought to the CAC—a safe, child-focused environment—by a caregiver or other “safe” adult. At the CAC, the child tells their story once to a trained interviewer who knows the right questions to ask in a way that does not retraumatize the child. Then, a team that includes medical professionals, law enforcement, mental health, prosecution, child protective services, victim advocacy, and other professionals make decisions together about how to help the child based on the interview. CACs offer therapy and medical exams, plus courtroom preparation, victim advocacy, case management, and other services. This is called the multidisciplinary team (MDT) response and is a core part of the work of CACs.

What We Believe

We believe that every child has a right to a safe childhood free of violence.
By coming together we can make a difference in the lives of children in Medina County as well as across the country. When we promote safety, awareness and dialogue, we can prevent abuse from happening in the first place and help keep our children safe.
We invite you to learn more about the services and programs offered by the CCMC.

The Children’s Center of Medina County coordinates a Multi-disciplinary team approach to respond to allegations of sexual abuse of children in Medina County.
Our approach reduces trauma to the child and the family, and results in more prosecutions.

 

Forensic Interviews:

Our forensic interviewer conducts specialized interviews of children who report abuse. The goal of the forensic interview is to gather pertinent information from the child in a neutral, non-leading, and developmentally sensitive manner to determine the child’s safety.

 

Case Management:

The case manager/family advocate is committed to helping and educating each family about abuse and the complex systems that a family enters when a child makes an allegation of abuse. As each case goes through the investigation, prosecution and healing process, the Case Manager is there to help the family understand the process, learn about their rights and successfully access resources that will help their family.

 

Medical Evaluations:

A complete physical evaluation conducted by a medical provider who has been trained in child abuse. The medical evaluation has to purposes: to ensure the health and safety of the child and to identify any evidence of sexual or physical abuse.