Children’s Alliance Center
The Children’s Alliance Center of Berks County is a service of Opportunity House that serves child victims of sexual abuse under the age of 18. The CAC strives to reduce the child’s trauma by providing a unique multi-disciplinary response to child abuse. We enable law enforcement, prosecutors, child protective services, victim advocacy agencies and the medical and mental health professions to work together as a collaborative team to investigate and prosecute cases. Children are interviewed once, and various agencies observe the interview simultaneously to reduce the number of interviews and the amount of emotional stress. This model provides for more successful prosecutions while providing a child-friendly environment. Since opening in July 2004, we have helped thousands of children through our services. The CAC is an accredited member of the National Children’s Alliance, located in Washington, DC. The following program components are necessary for accredited membership in the National Children’s Alliance:
- Multidisciplinary Team
- Cultural Competency and Diversity
- Forensic Interviews
- Victim Support and Advocacy
- Medical Evaluation
- Mental Health
- Case Review
- Case Tracking
- Organizational Capacity
- Child-Focused Setting
- Berks Counseling Associates
- Berks County Children and Youth Services
- Berks County DA Office
- Berks County Detective’s Office
- Berks County Mental Health/Developmental Disabilities Program
- Local police departments and State Police
- Tower Health
- Reading Pediatrics
- Reading School District
- Safe Berks
- Service, Access & Management, Inc.
- Penn State Health St. Joseph
Did You Know:
- Every year, the Children’s Alliance Center of Berks County conducts approximately 400 forensic interviews.
- The greatest risk comes from friends and family, not strangers.
- Experts estimate that 1 in 10 children will be affected by child sexual abuse.
- Symptoms of sexual abuse can include physical and behavioral signs, but behavioral signs are more common.