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Family Advocacy

Someone with you every step of the way.

How well a child copes following the disclosure of sexual abuse has a lot to do with the support of the family. Our Family Advocate plays a key role in helping both child victims and their families in the aftermath of a crisis and/or trauma.

The advocate can provide access to needed information, specialized services and support throughout the healing and justice processes. Assistance may include:

  • Crisis assessment and intervention
  • Safety planning and risk assessment
  • Assessment of individual and family needs
  • Therapy and/or medical referrals, if necessary
  • Education on access to victim’s rights and Crime Victim Compensation
  • Presence during the Forensic Interview preliminary and post meeting
  • Provision of court education, tours, support and accompaniment throughout the court process

Getting medical attention.

The advocate can also help you obtain a non-invasive medical exam for your child. We partner with the YWCA to conduct these exams, which consist of a basic well-child exam with the addition of a specialized, noninvasive sexual abuse exam. The evaluation also provides children (and caregivers) an opportunity to ask questions about their bodies. Children often need the reassurance that their body is okay after sexual abuse has occurred.

For medical evaluation inquiries, please email Program Director, Sarah Zuidema, or call (616) 719-4689.

5% of children under the age of 18 are solicited sexually online.
1,000+ suspected child sexual abuse cases are reported in Kent County each year.
75% of childhood sexual abuse is thought to go unreported.
1 in 7 girls and 1 in 25 boys are sexually abused.
1,000+ suspected child sexual abuse cases are reported in Kent County each year.
75% of childhood sexual abuse is thought to go unreported.
1 in 7 girls and 1 in 25 boys
are sexually abused.
5% of children under the age of 18 are solicited sexually online.