The North Central Missouri Children’s Advocacy Center was founded in Trenton in 2003. Development Coordinator Amanda White says there needed to be a more localized, focused way to respond to child abuse. Former Grundy County juvenile officer Cathie Smith helped found the center.
White explains the center interviews children who have been through trauma.
The North Central Missouri Children’s Advocacy Center serves 10 counties. They include Grundy, Caldwell, Daviess, Linn, Mercer, Harrison, Livingston, Putnam, Sullivan, and Carroll.
The number of cases have increased through the years and White says usually referrals come from law enforcement and the Children’s Division.
White notes an interviewer only sees a child during an interview because any conversation before or after could get an interview thrown out if it was to be used in court.
She comments that training is constant for a forensic interviewer, and all positions at the center are like that but each case is different.
White says advocates attend court with families, and if a family has legal counsel, the family has the counsel on its own. Advocacy begins at the time an advocate calls to schedule an interview and goes until the case is closed.
Advocates also “touch base” with families after cases to see how they are doing and if there is anything they need help with.
The Black Silo Foundation selected the North Central Missouri Children’s Advocacy Center as a participating charity for the Mid-America Music Festival. The center will receive money from the event, which will be at the Black Silo Winery of Trenton on July 16 and 17.
Children’s Advocacy Center Development Coordinator Amanda White says it is “a huge honor and that the center will have volunteers helping at the event.”
Community members who are not employed by the children’s advocacy center can volunteer at the festival on behalf of the center if they are at least 16 years old. White says there are also sponsorships and a trip to Mexico.
The North Central Missouri Children’s Advocacy Center is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. White says it receives funding from grants, donations, and other fundraisers.
She referred to the Champagne and Diamonds event.
A farmers market fundraiser will be held at the Rock Barn in Trenton on August 14th from 8 o’clock to noon to benefit the children’s advocacy center. White is looking for vendors, and paperwork to sign up is at the office in Trenton. Vendors will pay a minimum of a $25 donation.
Other than money, the center accepts donations of books and comfort items, such as stuffed animals, toys, and blankets. Each child who is interviewed at the center receives a comfort item.
The North Central Missouri Children’s Advocacy Center is also looking for more volunteers and community members to serve on its board.
Contact Amanda White for more information at 660-359-2874.