How Can I Help My Child?     What Should I Do Next?     Links

How Can I Help My Child

Be Sensitive and Calm.
Allow the child to tell you what has happened without placing judgment.

Let them know they are not in trouble and that in order to keep them safe you must let others, who can help and guide you, know what has happened. A child needs to know that you are not angry with them, that you will find assistance and that you would like them to talk with others about what they have told you.

What Should I Do Next

You can Contact the child's pediatrician, your child's school, the Department of Children and Families or your police for assistance. All of these individuals know the appropriate measures to take to help your child and your family.

It's Important to do something!
The negative impact of child abuse upon a child's growth and development, learning, ability to trust and develop long lasting positive relationships, as well as good self esteem is well documented. It is very common for a caregiver to initially doubt that a child's disclosure, particularly when it involves someone well known to the family. This should not stop you from getting outside assistance.

If a DCF Social Worker or Police Office have contacted you about a team interview:

Children seem to be put at ease by knowing what to expect. It is helpful to inform your child that someone wishes to talk with him or her about what they told someone about being unsafe. It is equally important not to rehearse with your child or tell your child what to say.

You can always call the Child-At-Risk Hotline at 1-800-792-5200.

Check out Forensic Interview for more information.

Important Links
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network
National Center on the Sexual Behavior of Youth
Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center


The Essex Children’s Advocacy Center has two locations to serve children and their families in both the southern portion of Essex County as well as the northern portion of Essex County.  Both locations are by appointment only.


Essex CAC strives to reduce the impact of trauma on victims and families, while increasing access to child and family advocates, medical evaluation and treatment, mental health referral and the criminal justice system.


The Essex CAC is a public-private partnership agency that works closely with key partners who have signed memorandums of understanding.  


The Essex CAC provides the following services: Multidisciplinary Team Investigation, Specialized Medical Evaluations and Consultation and referral for Trauma Informed Mental Health intervention.


What is Child Abuse and what can I do? Information for parents and professionals. Important links to relevant resources.

News & Events

The Essex CAC hosts and participates in events that further their goals to provide quality care and services to the community. Check back frequently to see what we are up to.


The Essex CAC services are offered by appointment only. For information please call the Essex CAC at 978-745-6610 Ext. 5173. For medical appointments and questions please call the PediSANE Nurse at 978-984-7535.

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