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Call to Action - Spring 2024
Call your South Carolina State Legislators today and ask them to support a recurring state investment in the statewide response to child abuse in South Carolina! Your voice can make a difference!

The Impact of Child Abuse Last a Lifetime

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), like child abuse, have a lifelong impact on survivors. These traumatic experiences are often linked to chronic health problems, mental illness, and substance abuse in children and adults. The best practice and evidence-based response to child abuse that Children’s Advocacy Centers provide can help to reduce the impact of child abuse by providing victim-centered services and family-centered treatments designed to provide healing, justice, and trust for children and families who have been impacted by child abuse. Your help today can help the tomorrow for the over 13,000 children and families that South Carolina Children’s Advocacy Centers provide services for each year.

How You Can Help Us to BeHeard4Kids

The South Carolina Network of Children’s Advocacy Centers (SCNCAC) helps provide hope, healing and justice for abused children throughout South Carolina through our 28 member Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs). CAC’s are child-friendly facilities where law enforcement, child protective services, mental health, medical, and other professionals work together to investigate abuse, help children heal, and hold offenders accountable. You can help us to #BeHeard4Kids by making a donation to the South Carolina Network of Children’s Advocacy Centers or by giving directly to the CAC in your community. You can use the help button below to learn how you can donate to SCNCAC or your local children’s advocacy center.

You can also help us to #BeHeard4Kids by taking part in our Calls to Action to strengthen the statewide response to child abuse in South Carolina. A recent call to action involved reaching out to South Carolina policymakers to support the South Carolina Child Abuse Response Protocol Act which established a Child Abuse Response Protocol in South Carolina to formalize the use of Children’s Advocacy Centers and Multidisciplinary Teams in the statewide response to child abuse. The Protocol Act was signed into law by the Governor in 2021 thanks to many of you who helped by responding to our call to action. We will list future calls to action below with ways that you can help.

Call to Action – February 9, 2024

Investing in the Statewide Response to Child Abuse

We are asking that our supporters reach out to South Carolina Legislators to remind them how important the work of Children’s Advocacy Centers is to protecting children in South Carolina. Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs) play an important role in the statewide response to child abuse in South Carolina. Our statewide child abuse response protocol formalizes the use of Children’s Advocacy Centers and Multidisciplinary Teams in South Carolina. The shared goal is to deliver a best practice response to child abuse in South Carolina through the use of this standardized statewide child abuse response protocol.

South Carolina legislators are beginning work on the 2024-2025 fiscal year state budget and we want to let you know about this process and what actions you can take to ensure continued and stable funding for CACs in the statewide response to child abuse. A majority of states across the country provide state funding to support Children’s Advocacy Centers in the statewide response to child abuse. South Carolina currently provides $1,080,000 in one time funding and $80,000 in recurring funding per year to support the Children’s Advocacy Centers role in the states child abuse response. The recurring monies are a set amount that appear in the state budget each year while the one time monies have to be reapplied for each year and may or may not be approved. One time monies, while valuable, can create budget problems for Children’s Advocacy Centers as they have no way of knowing which staff can be retained to provide services to children until well into each fiscal year. Having the $1,500,000 of state funding as a recurring line item will better empower South Carolina communities and  Children’s Advocacy Centers to deliver a best practice response to child abuse.

The South Carolina Network of Children’s Advocacy Centers is working with Legislators and is requesting they increase state funding for the 29 Children’s Advocacy Centers in South Carolina to $1,500,000 and make the funding recurring to provide stable funding for the statewide response to child abuse in South Carolina. The figure to the left shows the current Children’s Advocacy Centers state funding amounts in southeastern states. The requested funding increase would have a positive impact on the capacity of Children’s Advocacy Centers to continue to deliver an evidence based best practice response to child abuse in all 46 South Carolina counties. Children’s Advocacy Centers have seen a 41% increase in the number of children served each year over the past 7 years.

How You Can Help

The more you can do to BeHeard4Kids and amplify the voices to our elected officials, the better chance our efforts to increase support for Children’s Advocacy Centers in the response to child abuse will succeed. Please reach out to your elected officials and let them know that you support increasing the state funding support to the South Carolina Network of Children’s Advocacy Centers to $1,500,000 and making the funding recurring to support the work of the 29 Children’s Advocacy Centers in South Carolina. Let them know about your local CAC that is in their district and how important state funding is to continue to help child abuse victims in your community. You can find information via the links below about your local CAC and talking points to use when contacting your legislators. Then use the link below to find contact information for your South Carolina House and Senate elected officials. Email them or call their office, your voice can make the difference in our efforts to #BeHeard4Kids!