National Children’s Alliance recognizes CHANGE, Inc.’s Comfort House Child Advocacy Center for its ongoing delivery of high quality and effective services to child abuse victims through accreditation
Weirton, WV – CHANGE, Inc.’s Comfort House Child Advocacy Center has been awarded re-accreditation by National Children’s Alliance following an extensive application and site review process. As the accrediting agency for Children’s Advocacy Centers (CAC) across the country, National Children’s Alliance awards various levels of accreditation and membership to centers responding to allegations of child abuse in ways that are effective and efficient, and put the needs of child victims of abuse first. Accreditation is the highest level of membership with National Children’s Alliance and denotes excellence in service provision.
Accredited CACs must undergo a re-accreditation process every five years to ensure that best practices are continually being applied. With accreditation standards being updated in 2010, re-accreditation this year reflects CHANGE, Inc.’s commitment to providing evidence-based methods practice.
The Comfort House opened in 2007 serving the children of Hancock and Brooke Counties. CHANGE, Inc. assumed the operation of the Comfort House on January 1, 2017, and that same year, the Comfort House became NCA accredited. On average, 175 interviews are performed each year, slowly increasing over the past four years. Since opening, over 1,200 interviews have been completed with a 50% disclosure rate. Of these children interviewed last year, 58% were female and 42% were male with 34% referred for medical exams and trauma-focused counseling. As an Accredited Member of National Children’s Alliance, CHANGE, Inc.’s Comfort House CAC is dedicated to providing comprehensive, coordinated and compassionate services to victims of child abuse.
National Children’s Alliance awards Accredited Membership based on a CAC’s compliance with 10 national standards of accreditation to ensure effective, efficient and consistent delivery of services to child abuse victims. Accredited Members must utilize a functioning and effective Multidisciplinary Team approach to work collaboratively in child abuse investigation, prosecution, and treatment. National Children’s Alliance also considers standards regarding a center’s cultural competency and diversity, forensic interviews, victim support and advocacy, medical evaluation, therapeutic intervention, and child focused setting.
“As an organization/team of individuals dedicated to responding to child abuse, we recognize the importance of maintaining Accredited status from National Children’s Alliance. Re-accreditation not only validates our organization’s dedication to proven effective approaches of child abuse intervention and prevention, but also contributes to consistency across the child advocacy center movement as a whole,” said Judy Raveaux, CEO of CHANGE, Inc.
“The Comfort House is to be commended for its continued commitment to effectively serve victims of child abuse. As the national association and accrediting body for Children’s Advocacy Centers across the country, our goal is to ensure that every victim of child abuse has access to high quality services that result from professional collaboration. By requiring Accredited Centers to undergo re-Accreditation every five years, we ensure that evidence-based practices are being implemented and the highest quality of service is being provided,” remarked Teresa Huizar, Executive Director of National Children’s Alliance.
For more information about CHANGE, Inc. and the Comfort House Child Advocacy Center, visit www.changeinc.org.
# # #
Formed in 1983 in response to layoffs at Weirton Steel, CHANGE, Inc. Community Action Agency and Community Health Center has grown into a non-profit serving Hancock, Brooke, Ohio, and Marshall Counties in West Virginia , Jefferson County in Ohio, and surrounding areas. Services include health, housing, outreach, transportation, emergency services and income management. For more information on each of these programs, visit www.changeinc.org, or find us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
National Children’s Alliance is the national association and accrediting body for the over 750 children’s advocacy centers serving each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Dedicated to helping local communities respond to allegations of child abuse in ways that are effective and efficient, and put the needs of child victims of abuse first, National Children’s Alliance provides support and advocacy to its accredited membership, as well as numerous developing centers, multidisciplinary teams and child abuse professionals around the country, and the world. As the national authority on multidisciplinary approaches to supporting child victims of abuse, the purpose of National Children’s Alliance is to empower local communities to provide comprehensive, coordinated and compassionate services to victims of child abuse. Founded in 1998, National Children’s Alliance provides accreditation opportunities, financial assistance, training, technical assistance, research and education to communities, child abuse professionals and children’s advocacy centers throughout the United States in support of child abuse intervention, advocacy and prevention. www.nationalchildrensalliance.org