CHILD PROTECTION CENTER
The Mississippi Valley Child Protection Center (pictured above) is located at:
1600 Mulberry Ave.
Muscatine, IA 52761
If you suspect abuse or neglect call:
National: 1-800-4-A-CHILD (1-800-422-4453)
The Mississippi Valley Child Protection Center is proud to receive support from
Muscatine Health Support Foundation
Community Foundation of Greater Muscatine
United Way of Muscatine
Muscatine Charities, Inc.
A TEAM APPROACH
Each year, countless children suffer from abuse and neglect. All too often they are victimized by the very adults charged with protecting and providing for them, adults these children love and need. Unfortunately, in our efforts to come to the aid of abused children, child abuse professionals may inadvertently cause additional suffering to child victims and their families, as our civil and criminal justice systems were generally not created with child victims in mind.
The Mississippi Valley Child Protection Center is a part of the Iowa Chapter of Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs). These centers were established in an effort to enhance the sensitivity and responsiveness of these systems, thereby minimizing the impact of the trauma, providing vital medical and mental health services for these children and their families, and facilitating the prosecution of perpetrators through coordination of services and implementation of a collaborative approach.
Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs) operate on the fundamental belief that the best interests of the child victim should be protected as the case proceeds through the investigation and prosecution stages and beyond. CACs offer a child-friendly environment where child victims can feel safe talking about it, in the event something has happened to them. Additionally, CACs ensure that the information and therapeutic services necessary to the healing process are readily accessible for these children and their protective family members.
A forensic interview is a recorded session, designed to elicit a child’s unique information when there are concerns of possible abuse or when the child has witnessed violence against another person. The forensic interview is conducted in a supportive and non-leading manner by a professionally trained individual. Interviews are remotely observed by representatives of the agencies involved in the investigation (such as law enforcement and child protective services), to minimize the number of times the child is asked to talk about their abuse.
Medical exams are conducted at the Child Protection Center by a medical professional trained in child maltreatment. These exams are conducted in a manner that is trauma sensitive and ensures for the overall health and well-being of the child.
The Child Protection Center provides support for children and non-offending caregivers. The family advocate explains the investigation and prosecution process and helps the caregiver and child to understand what is happening each step of the way. The family advocate connects families to community resources necessary to the family's healing and overall well-being.
Mississippi Valley Family Resiliency Program
The Family Resiliency Program is one of three in the state of Iowa working collaboratively to provide comprehensive assessment and treatment services for children and families affected by parental substance use. For more information click here.
Presentations, workshops and training events related to child abuse and neglect are provided by staff at the Child Protection Center.
Multidisciplinary Team Approach
Multidisciplinary Teams (MDT) are made up of many professionals including:
Law enforcement investigators
Child protective service workers
Mental health professionals
Other local service providers
In the neutral setting of the CAC, team members can collaborate on strategies that will aid investigators and prosecutors without causing further harm to the child. This innovative multidisciplinary approach significantly increases the likelihood of a successful outcome in court and long-term healing for the abused child, the most vulnerable of crime victims.
CAC multidisciplinary teams collaborate to:
Limit, when possible, the number of times each child is interviewed
Provide comfortable, child-friendly settings for interviews
Reduce the child victims’ travel to investigative agencies
Coordinate medical and mental health services
Increase public awareness about the incidence and impact of child abuse
For more information about the Child Protection Center contact Kadie McCory, Program Manager, at KadieM@childabuseqc.org or 563-264-0580.