ATLANTA, February 15, 2024
Georgia Center for Child Advocacy Launches the "Keeping Kids Safe" Campaign Amid Funding Crisis
What’s the news?
The Georgia Center for Child Advocacy (GCCA) is proud to announce the launch of its "Keeping Kids Safe" Campaign, a vital initiative aimed at raising $2,000,000 over the next three years to support its core Child Advocacy Center (CAC) services.
The "Keeping Kids Safe" Campaign is a call to action for individuals, businesses, and philanthropic organizations to support the GCCA's mission. Contributions will directly support forensic interviews, wraparound services for families, and free therapy for children recovering from trauma.
This urgent call to action comes in the wake of a significant 61% reduction in federal funding through the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA), which has decreased from $828K to $322,500, leaving the organization facing a major deficit in its ability to serve vulnerable children and families across Atlanta.
Despite the financial challenges, the GCCA remains committed to its mission of championing the needs of severely abused and trafficked children through prevention, intervention, therapy, and collaboration.
What are the facts?
· 1 in 10 children will be sexually abused before they turn 18
· 90% of child sexual abuse victims know their abuser
Why is this important?
With over 900 children served annually, the GCCA provides critical services including forensic interviews, family advocacy, trauma-focused therapy, and community engagement to reduce child abuse and trafficking across Georgia.
In 2023 alone, the GCCA made a significant impact by conducting over 770 child forensic interviews, holding 429 family advocate meetings, and providing 1,540 therapy sessions—a 34% increase in overall services provided from the previous year. The organization has also trained over 1,096 mental health providers in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT) and reached over 200,000 adults in Georgia with child sexual abuse prevention training since 2006.
GCCA’s work and impact reaches far beyond the Georgia state lines. Last year, GCCA collaborated with representatives from the countries of the Republic of Georgia, Chile, and Mongolia to provide training and education on responding to child sexual abuse and trafficking.
What are people saying?
"The drastic cut in our largest federal grant has put us in a position where we may have to cut services and turn away families in crisis. We are facing difficult decisions regarding staffing and our capacity to continue our current level of services. We urgently need the support of our community and donors to ensure that victimized children have a voice and can access the critical services they need to heal from trauma."
- Sheila Ryan, CEO, Georgia Center for Child Advocacy
"We see the resilience of children every day despite their horrific experiences. From the teenage girl escaping her trafficker, the brother and sister witnessing their mother’s homicide, to the young boy recovering from the traumatic abuse experienced by a family member – they all need the critical support services we provide at GCCA. With the community's support, we can continue to provide these vulnerable children with a chance to find their voice, be heard, and heal."
- Vicki Kipreos, Chairman of the Board, Georgia Center for Child Advocacy
“The Georgia Center is helping combat the fight for abuse against children in Georgia. Every GCCA Team member delivers amazing results, not only for law enforcement assistance, but also for the victims who suffer abuse and trauma. The Georgia Center and all the hard work they provide gives victims the opportunity to recover, heal, feel safe and more important have hope for the future.”
- Det. J. King, City of South Fulton Police Department
About the Georgia Center for Child Advocacy
The Georgia Center for Child Advocacy is dedicated to championing the needs of abused and trafficked children through comprehensive services including prevention, intervention, therapy, and collaboration. Serving the community for over 37 years, the GCCA is committed to ensuring the health, safety, and well-being of children and families across Georgia. For more information about the Georgia Center for Child Advocacy and how you can help, please visit https://georgiacenterforchildadvocacy.org/.