Interviews of alleged child abuse victims are conducted and recorded at AWAKE. They are conducted by AWAKE staff that have received specialized training in interviewing children. Interviews are done in a collaborative approach to avoid duplicative interviewing of the child.
AWAKE's trained Nurse Practitioner, conducts CME's for children going through abuse situations. The Nurse Practitioner received her training at UNC Chapel Hill with the Child Medical Evaluation Program. The Nurse Practitioner examine's the child's entire body, including genital area, and may take photos, but they will only be used for medical purposes. Lab work can be done at our local hospital, if necessary. No part of the CME will be done without the child's consent.
AWAKE's case manager/victim services coordinator assists with forensic interviews and child medical evaluations, by helping the family to understand the process. The victims service coordinator also refers victims and non-offending caregivers to appropriate services and continues to follow up with them throughout the investigation and court process.
AWAKE partners with Meridian Behavioral Health Services to provide on-site, trauma-focused, counseling services to the child clients. This service is at no cost to children and families and offers an alternative and confidential environment for children to recover from abuse.
AWAKE coordinates and hosts a multi-disciplinary team meeting monthly to discuss current child abuse cases in Jackson County. The multi-disciplinary approach is essential to the child advocacy center model and ensures that the child's needs are being met. This also ensures that duplicative services are limited.
AWAKE provides the opportunity for agency professionals, volunteers, and others in the community to receive child abuse training. AWAKE staff are available for community presentations and participate in local exhibits and fairs to distribute child abuse information.
SCAN, Stop Child Abuse and Neglect, a nationally-recognized child abuse prevention program, provides the script for a puppet show presented by AWAKE staff, volunteers, and school counselors to hundreds of kindergartners in the area in the spring, timed to coincide with April Child Abuse Prevention Month activities.