For Victims of child abuse and their families it’s comforting to know that the Child Advocacy Center is there to offer them the support they need to deal with the traumatic affects of physical or sexual abuse.
Located at 370 South Fourth Street in Fulton, the CAC of Oswego County is a non-profit charitable organization that provides a range of services to children who have been physically, sexually, or emotionally abused.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Working together with law enforcement investigators, child protective services, medical providers, therapeutic professionals, victim support professionals, and the district attorney’s office, the CAC looks to maintain a well-coordinated, effective approach to child abuse investigation and prosecution, and service provision to families and individuals affected by child abuse.
Jennifer Bray joined the staff at the CAC less than a year ago.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â As a victim advocate Bray provides support to child victims and the non-offending family members.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â She coordinates all victim services, works with members of the trauma response team, and works with the family during the duration of the case setting up therapy sessions, medical referrals, forensic interviews, providing court accompaniment and coordinating monthly case reviews to ensure that the case is progressing smoothly.
Bray has seen first hand the positive impact that the CAC’s services can have and enjoys being part of a team approach that effectively meets the needs of abuse victims and their families.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â “The Child Advocacy Center is a real asset for Oswego County,” said Bray.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â “We are very fortunate to have access to the type of services that the CAC offers.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Several of our surrounding counties do not have a Child Advocacy Center.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Child abuse victims and their families are therefore exposed to interviews at several different locations.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â It is a situation that can be very intimidating and stressful for the family.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â By accessing the services of the CAC Oswego County residents are able to come to one location for their investigative interviews and their medical exams.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â It is much less stressful and helps ease a rather traumatic experience for the child and their family.”
In addition to her work as a victim advocate Bray also is involved with community outreach efforts to help spread the word about the CAC and educate community members about the array of services that the agency offers.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â Bray makes personal appearances at area schools, law enforcement agencies and human services agencies to discuss the benefits of utilizing the CAC and accessing its services.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â “I want to raise awareness of the CAC and encourage people to use our services if or when the need arises.”
Bray is also involved with the CAC’s abuse prevention programs as she coordinates the agency’s Yello Dyno Personal Safety Program, a proactive presentation that focuses on preventing child abuse through education.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â The program provides educators and parents with the curricula and products needed to teach children ages 4 thru 12 how to avoid becoming a victim of internet users, abductors, child abusers, sexual predators, and bullies.
“I enjoy working with the children and working with other team members to help the victims and their families deal with the abuse and successfully move on with their lives,” added Bray.
Established in 2001, the CAC is a safe, child-friendly site for the investigation, prosecution and treatment of child abuse.Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â For more information on the CAC you may contact them at 592-4453.