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The Children’s Advocacy Center of Bristol County (CAC), a non-profit organization that has helped 4,600 children and their families who have experienced the trauma of sexual abuse, severe physical abuse or have witnessed violence, today celebrated its 10-year anniversary at an event attended by many state and local service agencies as well as elected officials and members of the law enforcement community.
The CAC held this event to recognize the community for its contributions to the organization and the successful collaboration over the years that has helped the children and families of Bristol County. The CAC has seen a 123 percent increase in the families served since its maiden year. It has taken a joint effort of elected officials, partner agencies and donors throughout the county to grow and sustain these important services.
According to a CDC report, as many as one in four girls and one in six boys will experience some form of abuse before the age of 18. The mission of the CAC is to facilitate a best practice response to child abuse and provide support to victims within Bristol County. The CAC is one of 800 Children’s Advocacy Centers in the United States, and its coordinated response to child abuse is based on a national best practice model.
The staff at the CAC work closely with a multi-disciplinary team comprised of Bristol County law enforcement, Massachusetts Department of Children and Families, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn, the Massachusetts Pedi-SANE program, and other community-based agencies.
On July 1, 2017, the CAC merged with JRI, an organization that provides trauma-informed care to children and adults in Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut. This merger allows the CAC to leverage JRI’s training and administrative support while addressing the agency’s unmet needs to further its support for children who have suffered or been witness to abuse.
“Today we celebrate this past decade of dedication to serving victims and fostering survivors as well as our ongoing efforts to keep fighting child abuse and providing a support system to individuals and families who have experienced it,” said Michelle Loranger, Executive Director of the CAC. “We also celebrate the next chapter for our organization, where we will be strengthened through the guidance and support of our new parent organization.”
“The work that the Children’s Advocacy Center does in providing services to abuse victims and their families fits seamlessly with the trauma-informed care that JRI provides, and as one organization our agency looks forward to continuing to serve families across Bristol County and beyond,” said Andy Pond, President and CEO of JRI. “By bringing in the resources of the Trauma Center and other programs at JRI, we will be able to do even more to assist the CAC with its mission to help children and their families on their path to healing.”
The Children’s Advocacy Center of Bristol County, a division of the Justice Resource Institute, provides a coordinated response to disclosures and allegations of child sexual abuse, severe physical abuse and witness to violence.