The Children’s Advocacy Center for Rockwall County provides a safe, child-friendly environment where law enforcement, child protective services, prosecution, medical and mental health professionals can collaborate within our own community to develop coordinated strategies to more effectively seek justice and promote healing for victims of child abuse.
What Is a Children’s Advocacy Center
A children’s advocacy center is a non-profit agency that provides a multi-agency coordinated approach to the investigation, prosecution, and treatment of child sexual and physical abuse.
Prior to the existence of child advocacy centers, children suffering from abuse and neglect often endured repetitive interviews due to lack of coordination between investigating agencies. Investigating agencies frequently duplicated efforts and complicated the process for victims and their families, increasing the trauma associated with reporting the abuse and jeopardizing the opportunity for successful outcomes in child abuse cases.
The multi-agency approach to investigating allegations of child abuse and to protecting children begins with the referral. Cases are referred to a children’s advocacy center by either a local law enforcement agency or Child Protective Services (CPS). Forensic interviews are conducted at the children’s advocacy center in an age appropriate room by trained professionals, who seek to minimize the number of interviews for children and to enhance evidence collection through the use of an unbiased and non-suggestive interview protocol. Medical exams are conducted by specially trained practitioners. Therapy and family assistance programs also are provided to clients and non-offending family members to help them understand their rights as crime victims and to assist them in accessing other resources in the community.