Q. What should I do if I suspect child abuse?
A. If you suspect or know that a child is being abused, call the Abuse Hotline at 1-800-96-ABUSE (962-2873). Calls are confidential. Or you can report the incident online at www.dcf.state.fl.us/abuse/report.
Q. How many children does CAC serve a year?
A. Our agency provides services to 3,500-4,000 children per year.
Q. Which counties does CAC serve?
A. We serve the residents of Lee, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades counties.
Q. Where is CAC located and what are your hours ?
A. We are located at 3830 Evans Ave. in Ft. Myers. We are within walking distance of LeeTran bus stops. Ample parking is also available. Office hours are Mon-Fri 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, but our Child Protection Team and Medical Staff are on-call 24/7. CAC is not an overnight shelter.
Q. Is there a fee for services?
A. All services are free of charge.
Q. What happens at the Children's Advocacy Center?
A. CAC is a child-friendly place where children meet with specially trained staff about issues of child abuse and neglect. If your child is to be interviewed, it will take place in a private, child-friendly room specifically designed for interviewing children.
Q. What do I tell my child about the interview?
A. You might tell your child, "You and I are going to the Children's Advocacy Center. It is a special place where kids go to talk. There will be a person there who talks to lots of kids about what happens to them and that person will be talking to you too." You might also consider telling your child, "That person will need to know everything that you remember so we can make sure you are safe and okay." It is important to let your child know that he or she is not in any trouble.
Founded in 1981, the mission of the Children's Advocacy Center of Southwest Florida (CAC) is to improve the lives of children and their families through a coordinated response to child abuse and neglect.
At CAC, we assess and treat kids believed to have been physically or sexually abused or to be at-risk of such abuse, and a provide a safe place for them to come and be heard. We offer abuse determination services as well as therapeutic counseling, parenting education and prevention programs in Lee, Hendry, Glades and Charlotte Counties.
We are the largest children's advocacy center in the state of Florida and the only one in the four-county area accredited by the National Children's Alliance.
Q. What happens after the interview?
A. You will be asked to talk to a member of the Child Protection Team both before and briefly after the interview. You will have the opportunity to ask questions and voice your concerns.
Q. Should I get counseling for my child?
A. Yes. Children may be uncomfortable discussing the abuse with their parents because they feel ashamed or guilty. Should negative emotions or reactions to the abuse remain untreated, or if the child cannot properly express discomfort, he or she will experience greater suffering and trauma.
Copyright 2017, Children's Advocacy Center of Southwest Florida.
Notice of Privacy Practices. All Rights Reserved.
If you know of or suspect child abuse, call 1-800-962-2873. Caller information is confidential.
Accredited by the National Children's Alliance and the Council on Accreditation. CAC is proud to be a United Way partner agency.
President -- Noelle Branning,
Lee County Tax Authority General Counsel
Vice President -- Anita Duenas,
Treasurer--Cole Peacock, Peacock Consulting
Secretary -- Dr. Jeff Graddy, Avion Consulting
Past President -- Rich Durnwald,
Kellie Burns, News Anchor
Anne Hansen, FGCU Business Manager
Larry Hart, Lee County Tax Collector
Charles Idelson, Investors' Security Trust
Candis Loving, FL Blue Acct. Executive
Paul Martin, Kolter Land Partners
Rosemary Meza, FGCU Academic Coord.
Liz Paul, ReMax Realtors
Matthew Roepstorff, Pavese Law Firm
Bruce Schultz, Island Mortgage
Peter Seif, Synergy Networks
Cynthia Shafer, Lahaina Realty
Jake Spanberger, Entech IT Consulting
Douglas Szabo, Attorney Henderson Franklin
Jill Turner, Founder & CEO
Sally Beckett, Child Protection Team Director
Val Gill, Family Alliance & Prevention Director
Lisa Rizzio, Development Director
Carrie Root, HR--FOR JOB INQUIRIES EMAIL firstname.lastname@example.org