The center opened in 1992, as a result of years of cooperative efforts by representatives of local child-serving organizations who saw a need for a neutral, free-standing facility where the agencies of help could come together on behalf of child victims and witnesses, who would be interviewed only once, on video. Previously, victimized children where interviewed repeatedly, usually in surroundings designed for the convenience of adults rather than the comfort of kids, by well-meaning grown-ups who lacked any specialized training in interviewing young children about embarrassing personal information. Recording interviews reduces the number of times kids must talk about their abuse, thus decreasing the trauma of disclosure and preserving the child's initial statement for court purposes.
The Chatham County Child Sexual Abuse Task Force eventually merged with the Domestic Violence Task Force, to form the county's Family Violence Council, which continues to meet monthly, to ensure coordination of services and to offer training and education on domestic violence and child abuse.
CCAC is housed in a comfortable and spacious building in midtown Savannah, convenient to law enforcement, DFCS and the courthouse. Adequate parking is available and the center is accessible by two bus lines. The actual location is confidential to protect the privacy of the children who use it.
Center services have expanded over the years to include long-term therapy, offered by licensed and highly experienced clinicians. Counseling, like all CCAC services, is free. However, the abuse must have been reported and a forensic interview conducted before a child can be enrolled in counseling.
Support for CCAC is provided by the City of Savannah, the State of Georgia through the Department of Human Services, United Way of the Coastal Empire, Chatham County, Combined Federal Campaign, the Victims of Crime Act through Georgia's Criminal Justice Coordinating Council, and through private donations - like yours!
For more information, to schedule a speaker, or to request services for your child, please call us at 912-236-1401.