Provides intervention, hope and healing to children and families affected by abuse, trauma and violence in the District of Columbia.
Imagine you are the victim of an unthinkable act of violence. You've made the difficult decision to disclose the incident, and now you must navigate the system and re-live your trauma by recounting the victimization to attorneys, doctors, police officers, mental health professionals and judges. Now imagine that same scenario, except you're only six years old.
Sadly, this is not uncommon. 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 6 boys will be sexually abused by their 18th birthday, and Washington DC, in fact, has the highest rate of child victimization in the country.
Safe Shores - The DC Children's Advocacy Center works to minimize the trauma experienced by children and families who have been affected by violence by coordinating a joint response to the abuse through the use of a Multidisciplanary Team (MDT). The MDT offers representatives from District agencies, including the Metropolitan Police Department, Child and Family Services, the Office of the Attorney General, Children's National Medical Center and the United States Attorney's Office, who come together at one time so the child may be interviewed only once. In addition, Safe Shores offers a number of other crisis intervention services such as meals, clothing, emergency financial assistance and information and referrals, as well as short- and long-term mental health services - all free of charge and available to child victims, their siblings and their non-offending caregivers.