• Children’s Advocacy Center reps speak to Lions Club members

Children’s Advocacy Center reps speak to Lions Club members

Tonight, 175 children in Texas will be abused either physically or sexually.

More than 80 Children’s Advocacy Centers across the state are giving recovering families somewhere to go and providing answers. One of those centers serves Denton, Wise and Jack Counties.

Representatives from the CAC of North Texas, Michelle Rocha and Nicole Rosenbaum, spoke to Jacksboro Lions Club members July 27. Rocha said the CAC is a part of the criminal court system that offers six core services, in both English and Spanish. Those include forensic interviews and exams, multi-disciplinary team coordination and case review, family advocacy services and mental health services.

One-quarter of the CAC’s $5.8 million budget goes toward mental health, according to their brochure. The services are for both the children and family

Rocha said their multi disciplinary team (MDT) includes prosecutorial teams in all three counties along with law enforcement and DFPS investigators, medical personnel and staff. Rocha offered some stunning statistics statewide.

“Ninety percent of abuse goes unreported but one in four girls and one in six boys will be victims of sexual abuse by the time they are 18 years old,” Rocha explained.

In Wise County alone in 2021 780 kids and 450 adults were served by the CAC. Jack County numbers were not available because the CAC hasn’t served Jack County for a year, Rosenbaum explained.

One of the CAC objective is to empower the victim and coordinate the investigation of abuse. Rosenbaum said once or twice a month a case review of each case being worked is held. All the details are talked through to ensure nothing or no area falls through the cracks.

“No two cases are alike,” Rosenbaum explained. “We want to make sure the right decision is made every time. Collaboration is what the CAC is all about.”

The CAC provides education for children up to age 18 on subjects such as internet safety and what kids need to know about sexual assault. Kid safety classes for grades 3-5 teaches personal boundaries, bullying, social media and how to report abuse.

To schedule and educational session contact education@cacnorthtexas.org. For further information about the center visit cacnorthtexas.org.

Jacksboro Newspapers

212 N. Church
PO Drawer 70
Jacksboro, Texas 76458

Phone: (940) 567-2616
FAX: (940) 228-0589