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20 years working hand-in-hand for children to celebrate Child Advocacy Center anniversary


Tue, Nov 10th 2015 06:15 pm

The Child Advocacy Center of Niagara will observe its 20th anniversary at a reception Monday, Nov. 16, at the Lockport Town and Country Club.

Proceeds will support furnishings for the therapy and children's waiting rooms at the center's new home in the Golisano Center for Community Health. The Golisano Center is scheduled to open next spring on the campus of Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center.

The anniversary event is being held in partnership with the Child Abuse Intervention Project, Niagara County's multidisciplinary team of child protection, law enforcement, prosecution, victim advocacy, medical and mental health professionals.

A service of Memorial Medical Center, the Child Advocacy Center of Niagara provides a multidisciplinary response to severe child abuse through coordination with criminal justice, child protection, medical, mental health and victim advocacy professionals in a child-friendly setting.

"The center provides a safe place for children to participate in forensic interviews, medical care and therapy," said Child Advocacy Center Executive Director Ann Marie Tucker. "In addition to these core services, the CAC provides advocacy services to victims of crime in Memorial's ER1 emergency department and to caregivers of child clients experiencing domestic violence. Most recently, we have opened our Safe Harbor project for child trafficking victims."

The Child Advocacy Center also coordinates Niagara County's Child Death Review Team and provides community education and professional training on issues related to child abuse and interpersonal violence.

In its 20 years of operation, the center has served 4,500 children, while its family services component has served more than 1,200 adults. Thousands of people have participated in its education programs.

"These services could not be provided without the support and collaboration of Niagara County's law enforcement, child protection and prosecution professionals," Tucker said.

Monday's event will be held from 5:30-8 p.m. Music will be provided by Keith Shuskie, a local musician who appeared on NBC's "The Voice." Tickets for the event are $40 and can be purchased at cacofniagara.org or by calling 716-285-0045.

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