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New centre will help children who have been abused
A new centre will give abused children a place to find help.
The new Child Advocacy Centre opened Monday on Cedar Pointe Drive in Barrie on a promise that “children’s voices will be heard.”
“What we do is help with the process of abuse disclosure. We help the children and the families feel comfortable throughout the process and explain to them what that process will be,” says Tracey Carter, a spokesperson.
One in three girls and one in six boys in Canada experience a form of sexual abuse before the age of 18.
Barrie police and the OPP were the driving force behind establishing the new non-profit centre. Barrie police Sgt. Val Gates says this centre is long overdue.
“In 2015 there was over 900 joint investigations. So if there was a way to make that better and less traumatic for the children then that's what we need to do,” he says.
The centre offers information on cyberbullying education programs, child protection services and mental health support.
The centre can assist organizations too, connecting them with professionals who can help young people in tough times.
“We can provide organizations with training that puts protocols very much in place,” says OPP Sgt. Terry Paddon.
Dozens of people have already reached out to the organization for help.