Avon, IN- Susie’s Place Child Advocacy Center was founded in Hendricks County in 2008 and opened our doors for operations in April, 2009 with a mission to provide a neutral, child-friendly center for the investigation of allegations of child abuse and neglect, while maintaining the comfort and safety of the child as the first priority. Since our inception, Susie’s Place has forensically interviewed over 4,000 alleged child victims of crime for more than 30 Indiana counties.
The Hendricks County Community Foundation provided matching grant funds to support the Susie’s Place Child & Family Advocate part-time position. Children and families in crisis need assistance in navigating the multiple systems involved in the child advocacy center response.This project provides support and advocacy services to alleged child victims and non-offending caregivers referred to Susie’s Place during the investigation process to help reduce trauma and improve case outcomes.
The Susie’s Place Child & Family Advocate provides a number of support and advocacy services that prove challenging to measure in terms of quantitative outcomes. However, the below statistics provide a glimpse at the quantity of services being provided with the support the Hendricks County Community Foundation Grant during the grant cycle.
1) Child & Family Advocate was present during 278 cases involving an allegation of a crime against a child.
2) Provided 1,261 follow up contacts and referrals to alleged child victims and non-offending caregivers.
3) Made referrals to/for mental health services, tutoring, support groups, food pantries, housing, legal services, protective orders, medical exams, and many more.
Susie’s Place has received a great deal of quantitative feedback indicating that the addition of the Child & Family Advocate position to the Susie’s Place services has created a new depth of service for families that is ensuring children and families are receiving the support needed to begin recovering from the impact of child sexual abuse. Additionally, Susie’s Place has seen a dramatic increase in the number of children engaging in follow up support services as a result of the follow through with the Child & Family Advocate.
“Without the support of generous contributors like the Hendricks County Community Foundation, Susie’s Place would be unable to provide Child & Family Advocacy services to child victims and caregivers trying to recover from significant trauma” reports Emily Perry, Executive Director of Susie’s Place.