Denton County Giving: Children's Advocacy Center of North Texas
Before the creation of Children's Advocacy Centers, children subjected to abuse were questioned within the often times cold, sterile walls of police departments. But with these centers now all around the country, children have a warm, comfortable environment where they are able to speak with highly-trained forensic interviewers and tell their stories. These advocacy centers also make the system more efficient, allowing agencies to communicate more effectively with each other and limiting the number of times children have to retell their abuse stories.
And here in North Texas, we have an amazing advocacy center that serves Denton, Wise, and Johnson Counties - Children's Advocacy of North Texas. We were able to catch up with CEO Kristen Howell to learn more about their updated and new facilities in Lewisville, as well as what they're doing to continue and expand their community outreach with their mission to protect and safeguard the children in the communities they serve.
What exactly does an Advocacy Center do? This is the first place a child and their family goes during an investigation, and they provide support, therapy and resources throughout the investigation and prosecution process.
With their expanded facilities in both Denton and Lewisville, the Children's Advocacy Center of North Texas offers multiple forensic interview and play therapy rooms to help children and families through all stages of dealing with abuse. They also have their Rainbow Room which is always well-stocked with clothing, food, and toiletries to meet basic needs.
Kristen and her volunteers and staff are so grateful for the all of the support that they receive from our community. Kristen attributes much of the success they have in helping families to all of the support they do receive from volunteers, public officials, donations, etc.
And if you are looking for a way to help the Children's Advocacy Center and their mission, there are so many other ways to help. You can view Volunteer opportunities on their site, as well as what items they are currently in need of on their Wish List, and other ways to donate.
We think that Kristen best summed up their mission when she equated it to being the light in the lives of these children when all they're surrounded by is darkness. What an amazing opportunity to surround them with people they can feel safe and comfortable with - to hopefully change the trajectory of that child's life.
*For more information about the Children's Advocacy Center of North Texas, visit their website: www.cacnorthtexas.org.