SRNS helps develop assets for kids in Aiken and Barnwell counties | Native Information

April was the national month for the prevention of child abuse. This month recognized the importance of families and communities working together to prevent child abuse and neglect. Over the past two years, Savannah River Nuclear Solutions donated $ 40,000 to the Aiken County’s Child Advocacy Center. While Aiken is listed on his name, the CAC provides assistance to victims of child abuse in several South Carolina counties, including Barnwell.

In 2003, a group of concerned citizens led a task force composed of representatives from local childcare agencies to address the lack of a coordinated response to child abuse investigations. The CAC was established to ensure that all the services and assistance a child and their family need can be provided in one place – in a safe, caring, child-friendly environment that is free for a child’s family.

CAC offers a team approach that includes health professionals, law enforcement, and other specialists who work together to decide how best to help the child and their family. This multidisciplinary team reaction is a central part of the work of CAC.

Captain Darlene Cook of the Barnwell Sheriff’s Office is a member of the Barnwell team.

“The CAC provides a safe environment for children to speak to an experienced interviewer while collecting information that law enforcement can use to prosecute,” Cook said. “Our children are our future and we must protect them. The CAC is one of the big pieces of the puzzle that provides this protection and a door to healing for both children and parents. It’s an invaluable resource. “

Working with community partners like the CAC is an important theme of the SRNS Corporate Philanthropy Program.

“The CAC met with us and expressed an interest in expanding cellular services to Barnwell County,” said Kent Williams, SRNS director of radiation protection and CAC board member. “In 2020, 34 children from Barnwell, Allendale and Bamberg counties were interviewed, and the CAC has interviewed 13 by 2021. If you can provide services in Barnwell, the travel time for victims and their families will be shortened and services that will come closer to them will also be offered in Allendale and Bamberg. “

“During these changing times, the CAC continues to focus on protecting children. By working together, prevention services and support help keep children safe and produce thriving families, ”said CAC Director Maryann Burgess. “We are so grateful to SRNS for continuing to support our mission and not only support victims of child abuse, but also our efforts to train others to identify and prevent abuse.”

Savannah River Nuclear Solutions, a Fluor-led company with Newport News Nuclear and Honeywell, is responsible for the management and operations of the Department of Energy’s Savannah River site, including the Savannah River National Laboratory near Aiken.

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