Child Advocacy Center announces fundraising drive for effort to centralize services

02/26/2014 11:07 AM

02/26/2014 11:07 AM

The Child Advocacy Center of Sedgwick County and several partners will announce a fundraising drive on Thursday to help centralize services to nearly 2,000 children sexually and physically abused or neglected every year.

The staff intervenes immediately in abuse cases, coordinating with police, prosecutors, counselors and medical personnel to address not only the investigations but the child’s and the family’s well being.

The center has bought the former Lincoln Elementary school building at 1211 S. Emporia, and hopes to raise $4.5 million to renovate it, said Diana Schunn, the director. They already have $2.7 million in donations or pledges, and hope to make their case to public and private donors for the rest, she said. The announcement and an open house will be at 3:30 p.m. at the school, with tours and information about services offered, Schunn said.

Centralizing would streamline services and cut down on appointments children must keep and the number of times they have to tell what happened to them, Schunn said.

Victims and families face an array of meetings after investigations begin, she said. The children must meet with police and prosecutors, and with doctors and nurses while medical evidence must be gathered. And social workers intervene to help ensure future safety and possible placement.

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