Proving hope, healing and justice for abused children.
The Will County Children's Advocacy Center coordinates the investigation and prosecution of severe cases of child abuse in Will County, Illinois. Last year, we served more than 430 children (and their non-offending family members) who were sexually abused, severely physically abused, or who had witnessed a violent crime. Our average client is a 10-11 year-old girl, sexually abused by someone she knows and trusts.
After a child is referred to the Will County CAC by law enforcement or CPS, a forensic interviewer listens to the child’s story and asks non-leading, developmentally-appropriate questions as the child talks about the trauma he/she has experienced. Law enforcement, prosecution, DCFS, and mental health professionals observe the interview from a separate room. This reduces trauma for the child and provides a stronger foundation if the case goes to court.
Our family advocates are committed to helping each family navigate the complex systems that a family enters when a child makes an outcry of abuse. As each case goes through the investigation, prosecution and healing process, the team is there to help the family understand the process, learn about their rights and successfully access resources that will help their family during crisis.
Thanks to an "Expanding Access to Children’s Advocacy Centers’ Resources and Services for Victims of Child Pornography" grant from the National Children's Alliance, we provide specialized case management, support, and advocacy to youth who have experienced commercial sexual exploitation. Our Child Sexual Exploitation Victim Advocate provides crisis intervention and ongoing case management services to exploited youth, and assists them in getting basic needs met, advocating across a wide variety of situations, and supporting youth in actualizing their goals.
The Will County CAC is committed to providing a safe place for children to begin the healing process after they have experienced abuse. Our team of Master's level therapists and clinical social workers provide long-term, trauma-informed therapy to children of every age. Since child abuse affects the whole family, the services are available at no cost to every child and their non-offending family members. Individual and group therapy is offered in English and Spanish.
A forensic medical examination is offered to any child who is brought to the Will County CAC for allegations or concerns of child maltreatment. All medical evaluations are performed at the Care Center at Edward Hospital by warmhearted and knowledgeable staff, using a gentle, compassionate approach to restore the child’s sense of dignity and well-being.
Help us continue to provide hope, healing & justice for abused children.
Last year, the Will County Children's Advocacy Center served more than 430 Will County children (and their non-offending family members) who were sexually abused, severely physically abused, or who had witnessed a violent crime.
Children who have been victimized and receive program services at the Will County CAC, are less likely to: abuse drugs or alcohol, grow up to become victims of domestic violence, become involved in some sort of criminal activity, suffer from depression, anxiety disorders, or post-traumatic stress disorder, and/or develop suicidal ideation and self-harm.
Your financial gift can make a profound difference in changing a child’s life.