[intro] Guiding the community to protect all children from abuse. [/intro]
The New Orleans Child Advocacy Center (NOCAC) is a program of the Audrey Hepburn Children At-Risk Evaluation Center at Children’s Hospital that provides a coordinated, multi-agency approach to the investigation, intervention, and treatment of child sexual and physical abuse. We are located in a restored, child-friendly cottage co-located with the Audrey Hepburn CARE Center at 1101 Calhoun NOLA 70118
Children and families feel at ease when entering our cottage. The child is greeted by a member of the NOCAC staff. The child will then get a chance to choose his or her own interview room. Each room is decorated with a themed setting. The pre-teen room is surrounded with hot air balloons ready to take flight, and the teen room is a colorful array of the New Orleans French Quarter with bright red contemporary chairs that adjust for the child’s height and comfort.
While waiting for the interview to begin, the child can become comfortable with the cottage environment by playing video games, making arts and crafts, sitting in our rocking chairs on our front porch, watching a selection of movies, or helping themselves to snacks provided by the Women For a Better Louisiana.
The NOCAC team consists of NOPD child abuse detectives, child protection workers, New Orleans assistant district attorneys, Audrey Hepburn CARE Center forensic pediatricians, mental health counselors and NOCAC staff. The team meets biweekly to coordinate intervention services.
The primary focus is the best interest of the child. The team strives to reduce further trauma by limiting the number of interviews and assuring child safety. Together, the team works toward an acceptable, safe, and legally sound outcome for each family.