LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Sept. 20, 2012) - With most people's focus currently on education and children going back to school, one community college is putting the spotlight on recognizing and reporting child abuse.
Child abuse knows no boundaries and NorthWest Arkansas Community College (NWACC) is facilitating a statewide/region-wide service to train teachers, law enforcement officers, social workers, counselors, childcare providers, health professionals, and members of our legal and judicial systems to better Recognize, Report and Respond to victims of child abuse across Arkansas and a 16-state southern region.
The Division of Children and Family Services was called on to respond to over 33,000 reports (involving approx. 73,000 children) last year alone.
Using Prevent Child Abuse America statistical methodologies, it is estimated that Arkansas spends $365 million annually on the aftermath of child abuse.
Many of us have been shocked by the Penn State tragedy, but reporting issues like those at Penn State happen every day in every state.
Children we know and love are those who pay the price when professionals don't know what to do or fear to act when presented with the possible abuse of a child.
In response to this immense need, NWACC has become the first regional partner for the National Child Protection Training Center and is offering hands-on, specialized training to future and current child protection professionals in the mission to eradicate child abuse in three generations.
The Southern Region National Child Protection Training Center at NWACC has been operating since 2010 and trained over 3,000 professionals. Presently they are in the process of expanding the programming capacity and services through a $3 million renovation campaign to transform a presently owned former medical clinic into a hands-on training laboratory.
Once renovated, some of the hands-on laboratories that support the heart of the programming include:
- a two-story mock house including exterior entrance, bedrooms, kitchen, bathroom, and living area
- mock courtrooms
- forensic interview rooms
- medical exam training
- online crimes against children training room
The Center offers current professionals affordable, contemporary training in those same environments to hone their skills, practice working in multi-disciplinary teams across departments, and learn new techniques to better serve victims.
THV's Alyse Eady spoke to Amy Benincosa with the Northwest Arkansas Community College and Stephanie Smith from the National Child Protection Training Center on the school's mission to end child abuse. Click on the THVideo!
To learn more about the Training Center at NWACC, those involved in the mission, what this program offers and how to donate, visit www.nwacc.edu/web/ncptc/. To learn about NorthWest Arkansas Community College itself please visit www.nwacc.edu.
(Source: NorthWest Arkansas Community College)