Fifteen-year-old Janet* was referred to Safe Harbor Child Advocacy Center (Safe Harbor) after she made an outcry of sexual abuse perpetrated by her cousin. Janet was provided a multidisciplinary team response which included a forensic interview at Safe Harbor, where she made a disclosure of sexual abuse. Janet and her caregivers were provided supportive services by the Child and Family Advocate, and Janet was connected to clinical mental health services at Safe Harbor.
Because Safe Harbor offers free therapy services for children until the age of 18, Janet was able to receive Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT), which she attended regularly for several months. An engaged and supportive multidisciplinary team including the jurisdictional Victim Witness Program provided exceptional trauma-informed assistance, guidance, and support to the family throughout the case investigation. Consistent follow-up contacts were made to the caregivers to ensure that they and the child were not encountering any barriers to participation in treament or the investigation and continued to receive support.
As a result of participating in therapy at Safe Harbor, Janet has identifed many strengths that she views in herself. Janet’s journey to healing from her trauma has given her more insight and understanding surrounding the circumstances she faced. Janet has been able to identify triggers, coping strategies, and meaningful skills through participating in TF-CBT and has increased her self-awareness. She has overcome facing legal proceedings and various challenges with strength and grit which has allowed her to feel more empowered and in control of how she envisions her life going forward.
Janet's mother continues to periodically contact Safe Harbor staff and thank the team for their support in helping the family recover and move forward during an extremely challenging time in their lives.
*names changed for confidentiality purposes