Staff and volunteers from the Children's Advocacy Center of the Coastal Bend were on the Kiii-TV lawn all day Friday accepting donations to help stop child abuse.
It's all part of the Pinwheels for the Prevention of Child Abuse event. Thousands of pinwheels were placed in the lawn, each one representing a child who was taken to the CAC in 2012 due to allegations of child abuse.
Kleberg/Kenedy County District Attorney John Hubert dropped by to show his support, as did Aransas Pass Police Chief Eric Blanchard. Both made donations. They said the CAC helps law enforcement agencies and prosecutors as an investigative tool to find out if a crime has been committed, and if a crime has been committed, who is responsible.
Oftentimes when crimes are investigated, because of the expertise of the folks at the Advocacy Center in interviewing children, which is very delicate, they are able to tell law enforcement and prosecutors things that otherwise they wouldn't know, and it's in the children's own words. Sometimes law enforcement and prosecutors are able to clear people of charges, but they're also able to find out more about what happened, how it happened and who's responsible.
The CAC does not just function in Corpus Christi, although a majority of it works from this area. The Advocacy Center actually reaches out to the outlying communities, and those surrounding communities are grateful.
"Communities such as Kleberg and Kenedy, where of course I work," Hubert said. "We cannot fiscally, we cannot financially afford our own Advocacy Center. They've done an outreach to us and they provide us those services with the expertise that, of course, takes years in training. It takes years to develop, and so they're able to help us with our cases."
"The service they provide to us in Aransas and San Patricio counties goes primarily unfunded. It's kind of an extra service that they take on, and we're very appreciative for the services," Blanchard said. "They help the families out while the children are being interviewed, and it's a way that we can have that child interviewed in depth and in detail without having to go back to that child and make them relive those events over and over and over again."
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