Each year, countless children suffer from abuse and neglect. All too often, they have been abused and victimized by the very adults responsible for protecting them. Clearly, child abuse is a community problem. No single agency, individual, or discipline has the necessary knowledge, skills, or resources to provide the assistance that abused children need and deserve.
At the Gordon County Child Advocacy Center (GCCAC), we work within a multidisciplinary framework following our local child abuse protocols for Gordon County. The GCCAC offers support and coordinates the efforts of a multidisciplinary team (MDT) of professionals, consisting of:
- Gordon County Sheriff’s Office;
- Calhoun City Police Department;
- Gordon County District Attorney’s Office;
- Gordon County Division of Family and Children Services;
- Medical Professionals;
- Mental Health Professionals;
- Gordon County Child Advocacy Center;
- Gordon County Schools;
- Calhoun City Schools;
- Gordon County Juvenile Court;
- Gordon County CASA; and
- Domestic Violence Outreach.
In the neutral setting of the CAC, team members can collaborate on strategies that will assist investigators and prosecutors without creating further trauma for the child. This innovative multidisciplinary approach significantly increases the likelihood of a successful outcome in the judicial system and long-term healing for the abused child.
The GCCAC MDT collaborates to:
- Coordinate investigations;
- Limit, when possible, the number of times each child is interviewed;
- Provide comfortable, child-friendly settings for investigative, forensic interviews;
- Reduce the child victims’ travel to numerous investigative agencies;
- Coordinate medical and mental health services; and
- Increase public awareness about the issue and impact of child abuse.