Children’s Advocacy Center
223 W 28th Avenue
Covington, LA 70434
P.O. BOX 1852
Covington, LA 70434
Tel : 985-892-3885
Mission Statement and History:
Children's Advocacy Center - Hope House is an independent, non-profit organization dedicated to ending the cycle of child abuse in our community. We provide a path to recovery and a bridge to justice for victims of abuse. CAC Hope House provides forensic interviewing, family advocacy, specialized counseling, and child abuse prevention outreach at no costs to children and families in St. Tammany and Washington Parishes.
CAC Hope House was founded by the Exchange Club of West St. Tammany in 1994 to serve child abuse victims. Within the past 25 years, we have grown to meet the needs of our community; in 2018, we provided services to 317-child victims of abuse, and we trained over 500 individuals in standardized, child abuse prevention methods.
A forensic interview is performed by a professional who is trained in the complex dynamics of child abuse, the developmental issues of children, and the appropriate way to ask questions in a neutral, non-leading manner. It is a fact-finding conversation to determine if a child has been abused. A forensic interview discovers the child’s reality about their experience. The evidence collected during the forensic interview process is submitted to the investigating body and delivered to the 22nd Judicial District Attorney’s Office.
The interview is recorded in order to reduce the need for the child to relive the trauma by repeating the information to multiple agencies. These recorded interviews are one of the most effective and reliable ways to present the findings to the investigative team and to the court in order to provide justice for a child.
CAC Hope House's Family Advocacy Program ensures caregivers are equipped with the necessary tools and understanding to respond to each child's unique needs following abuse. We offer information and referral, and court accompaniment to ensure caregivers don't feel alone in navigating the court processes and acquisition of resources.
We provide Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), an evidence-based model demonstrated to decrease the impact of childhood trauma. CAC Hope House's counseling staff has received extensive specialized training in the use of the TF-CBT model. Counseling services are provided free of charge to children who have received forensic interviews through Hope House. Hope House is the only agency in St. Tammany Parish with Board Certified Practitioners in TF-CBT.
Child Abuse Prevention
CAC Hope House utilizes Stewards of Children, an evidence-informed child abuse prevention training, which aims to equip adults with skills to prevent child abuse within their community. Stewards of Children® is the only nationally available program scientifically proven to increase knowledge, improve attitudes and change child-protective behaviors. Appropriate for any adult, this training will teach you how to prevent, recognize, and react responsibly to child sexual abuse. Hope House offers monthly classes open to any members of the community. We also provide free training to schools, churches, civic organizations, and businesses.