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Slide 1 - CHILD ABUSEIn Tifton and Tift County, Georgia By Tracy Dyal PADM 7240 Public Administration and Community Based Organizations Summer 2005
Slide 2 - Child Abuse is on the Rise in Tift County One major reason for this is that reporting is better due to new programs being implemented, rather than there are more abuses occurring. New laws have also been introduce that require more people to report suspected cases of child abuse. New programs have been initiated in the schools that provide students with more information.
Slide 3 - What is Child Abuse? - 1 Physical abuse – when a parent or caretaker inflicts physical injury or death by other than accidental means Sexual abuse – when a person employs, uses, persuades, induces, entices, or coerces any minor who is not that person’s spouse to engage in any act which involves: sexual intercourse, bestiality, and masturbation, to name a few.
Slide 4 - What is Child Abuse? -2 Neglect – of a child by a parent or caretaker by not providing basic essentials for physical, social and emotional development. Emotional Abuse – verbal abuse or other behavior that creates a negative emotional atmosphere for a child, for example, rejecting, terrorizing, unreasonable demands, and shameful forms of punishment Source: 2005 GA Criminal Law 19-7-5 Source: Prevent Child Abuse Georgia
Slide 5 - Mandated Reporters of Child Abuse The following is a list of persons having reasonable cause to believe that a child has been abused that must report the abuse to the authorities: Physicians, interns, residents, or dentists Hospital or medical personnel including Nurses (RN’s and LPN’s) Professional counselors, social workers, or marriage and family therapists Licensed psychologists School teachers, administrators, guidance counselors, social workers, or psychologists Child welfare agency personnel Child-counseling personnel Child service organization personnel Law enforcement personnel Source: 2005 GA Criminal Law 19-7-5
Slide 6 - Child Abuse and Neglect 1999 – 2003 Although this data does not show the reported child abuse and neglect cases increasing, I was unable to obtain data from 2004 and 2005, but my source explains this is the case. Sources: Detective McMillan, Tift County Sheriff’s Department, and the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s website
Slide 7 - Government Agencies Community Organizations and Department of Family & Children Services Child Abuse Council Tift County Commission on Children & Youth The National Children’s Advocacy Center Ruth’s Cottage The Patticake House The Exchange Club of America Circle K “No Excuse for Abuse”
Slide 8 - Division of Family & Children Services (DFCS) A division of the Department of Human Services Responsible for investigating child abuse Responsible for finding foster care for neglected or abused children Believes that children have the right to grow up in a stable home in a safe and healthy environment and not to be abused or neglected http://dfcs.dhr.georgia.gov/portal/site Source: Department of Family & Children Services
Slide 9 - Child Abuse Council This organization sponsors many programs in the educating and preventing of child abuse in collaboration with other nonprofit organizations April is Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month as well as the time when most fundraising occurs Funds are received through various fundraising functions, membership drives, United Way, businesses, groups, and individuals No website has been created at this time Source: Interview with Lilly McEntyre, Child Abuse Council
Slide 10 - Tift County Commission on Children & Youth (TCCCY) A collaborative body that coordinates services and programs for children and families in Tift County Works in conjunction with Georgia’s Family Connection Partnership to address the serious challenges facing Georgia’s families and children One goal of TCCCY is “All Children will be free of abuse, neglect, and domestic violence” A benchmark for this goal is to reduce the rate of confirmed child abuse and neglect in Tift County www.tiftcountycommissiononchildrenandyouth.com Source: Tift County Commission on Children & Youth Source: Family Connection Partnership
Slide 11 - National Children’s Advocacy Center A nonprofit organization that provides education, training, and professional services in the form of: Prevention, Intervention, and Therapy Family Advocate Program – helps non-offending caregivers act in support of and protection for the alleged victim, responsively Forensic Evaluation – used to gather information about the alleged abuse to determine if the abuse actually occurred. Child Forensic Interview – used to allow the child to express in his/her own words and communication skills to explain what happened. Forensic Therapy – facilitates the healing process in abused children www.nationalcac.org Source: National Children’s Advocacy Center’s website
Slide 12 - Ruth’s Cottage Deals with domestic violence, child advocacy, and sexual abuse in Tift, Turner, Worth, and Irwin Counties Part of the Mission statement is to “end…child sexual and physical abuse through…investigation, advocacy, and support” Developed the Patticake House as a Child Advocacy Center to help serve the needs of abused and neglected children www.ruthscottage.com Sources: Sandra Wright, Administrative Assistant at Ruth’s Cottage and the Ruth’s Cottage web site.
Slide 13 - Patticake House - 1 The Patticake House is a newly created Child Advocacy Center serving Tift, Turner, Irwin, and Worth counties. Director came on board just 4 weeks ago and is in the process of hiring a Forensic Interviewer and setting up processes and procedures and will then hire a Services Coordinator as well as a Forensic Therapist Take referrals from DFCS or law enforcement Child is interviewed within 24 hours of incident with the Forensic Interviewer in the room and representatives from the DA’s office, law enforcement, and DFCS while the interview is videotaped.
Slide 14 - Patticake House - 2 The team of observers meet to discuss what the next step should be for the child and alleged abuser – gathering more evidence, getting a search warrant, and determining if there is a case A Services Coordinator then works with the family and gives referrals for follow-up and therapy (victims assistance) Each Child Advocacy Center is structured similarly, but have differences based on the needs of the community and resources available, as well as how it got started Web site is not up as of yet, but some information may be found at Ruth’s Cottage’s website Source: Interview with Ina Woodruff, Director of Patticake House
Slide 15 - Exchange Club of America The Prevention of Child Abuse is the Exchange Club’s one national project. Projects include educating and assisting in the on-going battle of child abuse in the region Held an Antique Auto Raffle in order to raise money to help reach their goals Sponsor fundraisers in conjunction with the Child Abuse Council http://pages.friendlycity.net/~exchangeclub/ Source: Exchange Club of Tifton’s website
Slide 16 - Circle K at ABAC A student organization at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College Collects teddy bears to give to others, including abused and neglected children in Tift County and other surrounding areas Sponsored a 5K run in their campaign “No Excuse for Abuse” in 2004 and 2005, in conjunction with the Child Abuse Council www.abac.edu/circlek Source: Circle K’s website at ABAC
Slide 17 - Ways to Help Get to know your neighbors Reach out to families and children in your community Volunteer to support children and families Encourage child- and family-serving agencies you are involved with to do something about child abuse Be an active community member Get involved with the local child abuse prevention agency or collaborative in your community Become an advocate Make a donation to organizations that serve children and families If you suspect child abuse, report it Source: Prevent Child Abuse Georgia
Slide 18 - Red Flag, Green Flag Program created by The Rape and Abuse Crisis Center in Fargo, ND in 1986 Objective is to teach children to “recognize abusive situations, especially sexual abuse, respond assertively responses in situations of abuse, and to tell adults about the abuse until someone listens to them” Source: Prevention Programs: Child Sexual Abuse
Slide 19 - Red Flag, Green Flag in Tift County Sponsored by the Child Abuse Council to educate 2nd graders in Tift County about Good Touches and Bad Touches Each child is given a booklet that is read by a member of the Child Abuse Council A DFCS representative and school counselor are present to assist the teacher and students Each child works in the booklet and identifies if they were “touched” in any hurtful ways The DFCS representative can then review what each child portrays and make decisions on whether the child may have been sexually or physically abused Source: Interview Lilly McEntyre via telephone
Slide 20 - “It’s Okay to Tell” Another Child Abuse Council sponsored program that is presented to all 3rd graders in Tift County The program is a puppet show, featuring ABAC education students as the puppeteers A DFCS representative is again present to answer any questions and to help catch those children that they suspect are or have been abused Source: Interview with Lilly McEntyre via telephone
Slide 21 - Cooperation between Community Organizations and Government The following organizations are 501(c)(3) and receive tax breaks from the local, state, and federal governments: Ruth’s Cottage Patticake House Tift County Commission on Children and Youth Child Abuse Council The Child Abuse Council works with DFCS and the local school system to educate children about child abuse Ruth’s Cottage and Patticake House apply and receive grants to assist in funding the programs within the organizations The Local government gives 5% of funds levied from fines in the circuit courts with a time limit for spending the money to both organizations
Slide 22 - Nonprofits Complementary to Government The nonprofit organizations that provide assistance to child abuse victims, as well as, educate parents and children, work as complements to the government Viewed as partners with the government by assisting in the delivery of public services with large financial assistance from the government (Boris, p 33) through grants and tax-related subsidies
Slide 23 - Room for Improvement - 1 The development of The Patticake House is the first step in the right direction For Tift and other surrounding counties to have their own local child advocacy center will enable more children who are abused to get the help they need Improvements can always be made in the fundraising efforts by targeting more businesses and local citizens Improvements can also be made in recruiting processes for volunteers to help the children in the community that are being abused Educating the school children as well as parents can be increased in most areas
Slide 24 - Room for Improvement – 2 The government and nonprofit organizations seem to cooperate with no real conflict In the multiple interviews conducted, not one source had anything bad to say about the other organizations, nonprofit or government The groups in Tift county are working together to prevent and detect child abuse by educating the public
Slide 25 - References – 1 Annie E. Casey Foundation www.aecf.org Retrieved June 9, 2005 Boris, Elizabeth T. & Steuerle, C. E. (1999). Nonprofits & Government: Collaboration and Conflict (1st ed). Washington DC: The Urban Institute Press Circle K at ABAC www.abac.edu. Retrieved July 9, 2005. Division of Family & Children Services dfcs.dhr.georgia.gov/portal/site. Retrieved July 9, 2005. Exchange Club of Tifton http://pages.friendlycity.net/~exchangeclub/. Retrieved July 9, 2005. Family Connection Partnership www.gafcp.org Retrieved June 14, 2005
Slide 26 - References - 2 Interview via telephone with Lilly McEntyre, Child Abuse Council conducted on July 12, 2005 Interview via e-mail with Detective Melissa McMillan, Tift County Sheriff's Office conducted on June 13 – 17, 2005 Interview via telephone with Ina Woodruff, Director of Patticake House conducted on July 11, 2005 Interview via telephone with Sandra Wright, Administrative Assistance at Ruth’s Cottage conducted on June 14, 2005 National Children’s Advocacy Center www.nationalcac.org Retrieved June 16, 2005
Slide 27 - References - 3 Prevention Programs: Child Sexual Abuse www.ucalgary.ca/resolve/violenceprevention/English/reviewprog/childsxprogs.htm# Retrieved July 12, 2005 Ruth’s Cottage www.ruthscottage.com Retrieved June 14, 2005 Tift County Commission on Children & Youth www.tiftcountycommissiononchildrenandyouth Retrieved June 14, 2005