FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
THE NORTH CENTRAL MISSOURI CHILDREN’S ADVOCACY CENTER RECEIVES $34,517.95 IN FEDERAL FUNDS TO BETTER SERVE ABUSED CHILDREN AND THEIR FAMILIES
Funds awarded as part of $9.8 million total in federal grants from National Children’s Alliance
TRENTON, MO (03-23-2012) -- On February 29, 2012, National Children’s Alliance, under agreement with the United States Department of Justice Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP), awarded the North Central Missouri Children’s Advocacy Center $34,517.95 to address the trauma experienced by children that have been abused in the north central area of Missouri. Overall, the federal grants totaled over $9.8 million and were distributed in the form of 91 awards to Children’s Advocacy Centers, Multi-Disciplinary Teams, and State Chapter Organizations across the country.
The North Central Missouri Children’s Advocacy Center will use these awarded funds to employ a Counselor on a part-time basis to address the specific trauma children experience at the hands of their abuser. A child referred to the Children’s Advocacy Center receives a forensic interview, where with the assistance of a specially trained interviewer, can tell their story in their own words, providing as much detail as possible. A child is re-victimized every time they are required to tell their story and having a counselor on-site will allow immediate crisis intervention at the time a forensic interview is conducted. The Children’s Advocacy Center seeks to conduct one thorough interview, making it available to those charged with the safety of and criminal investigation surrounding the child so re-victimization is lessoned and treated.
The grant is good for one year and allows for continued and specialized trauma focused training for the counselor to remain current in assessment and treatment methods, as well as participate in a peer review process. Peer review not only assists in critiquing the work performed but assists in improvement in problem areas and provides support to the counselor in his or her profession.
“The Advocacy Center is accredited by and operates under stringent standards set by the National Children’s Alliance,” explained the Advocacy Center Executive Director, Verna Kelsey. One of the standards requires that specialized trauma-focused mental health services, designed to meet the unique needs of the children and non-offending family members, are routinely made available as part of the multi-disciplinary team response to reports and investigations of child abuse. These services are to be made accessible at no cost to the family. We are very fortunate to receive these funds in an area where resources are scarce. The Child Advocacy Center goal at minimum is to assist the child in healing and resiliency so that they become functioning members of the community. This grant not only helps us meet the required standard for accreditation, but more importantly allows abused children to receive the services they need to heal.”
“During a time of federal and state budget cuts in the child protective services sector, coupled with a steady flow in child abuse and neglect cases, we are thrilled to be able to provide critical resources to Children’s Advocacy Centers around the country committed to the intervention and prevention of child abuse,” remarked Teresa Huizar, Executive Director of National Children’s Alliance. “The application process for receipt of these funds was extremely competitive, and each grant recipient presented their individual case for support in a compelling fashion. Grant awardees outlined detailed plans for assisting child victims of abuse in a variety of specified areas. We look forward to witnessing the positive impact these dollars will have on the lives of vulnerable children nationwide.”
National Children’s Alliance is a national funding source that supports grant recipients in the following areas: Children’s Advocacy Center Response to the U.S. District of Columbia; Children’s Advocacy Center Response to Commercially Sexually Exploited Children; Program Improvement; Urban initiatives; State Chapter Development; and State Chapter Support of Children’s Advocacy Centers.
For more information about the North Central Missouri Children’s Advocacy Center, visit www.ncmochildren.org or look them up on Facebook.
And for more information on National Children’s Alliance and the various benefits it offers its over 750 members across the country, including financial assistance, please visit www.nationalchildrensalliance.org
The role of the North Central Missouri Children’s Advocacy Center is to participate and assist in the coordination of the multi-disciplinary team approach to investigating child abuse/neglect and seek justice for child victims of abuse. The multi-disciplinary teams consist of representatives from law enforcement, prosecuting attorneys, juvenile officers, Children’s Division, medical and mental health professionals, staff from the Children’s Advocacy Center, and may include other key stakeholders in the health, education and welfare of children. The center provides services to the following thirteen counties in rural north Missouri: Caldwell, Carroll, Chariton, Clinton, DeKalb, Daviess, Grundy, Harrison, Linn, Livingston, Mercer, Putnam and Sullivan.
National Children’s Alliance is the national association and accrediting body for the over 750 children’s advocacy centers serving each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Dedicated to helping local communities respond to allegations of child abuse in ways that are effective and efficient, and put the needs of child victims of abuse first, National Children’s Alliance provides support and advocacy to its accredited membership, as well as numerous developing centers, multidisciplinary teams and child abuse professionals around the country, and the world. As the national authority on multidisciplinary approaches to supporting child victims of abuse, the purpose of National Children’s Alliance is to empower local communities to provide comprehensive, coordinated and compassionate services to victims of child abuse. Founded in 1998, National Children’s Alliance provides accreditation opportunities, financial assistance, training, technical assistance, research and education to communities, child abuse professionals and children’s advocacy centers throughout the United States in support of child abuse intervention, advocacy and prevention. www.nationalchildrensalliance.org.