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Posted on: February 7, 2017

Child Advocacy Center

Plans for a child advocacy center in Watertown are taking a big step forward, thanks in part to a partnership with Sanford Health and the Northeast Multidisciplinary Special Victims Unit.

Plans for a child advocacy center in Watertown are taking a big step forward, thanks in part to a partnership with Sanford Health and the Northeast Multidisciplinary Special Victims Unit.

Sanford Health Watertown Clinic has committed to providing this multi-disciplinary team with space on the second floor of the clinic to see patients. Child’s Voice, a child advocacy center based at Sanford USD Medical Center in Sioux Falls, will provide a pediatrician specially trained in forensic interviewing. As part of the work at the Watertown-based advocacy center, the pediatrician will evaluate patients from a 13 county area in northeast South Dakota.

Jolene’s Law Task Force began in 2014 which included child sexual abuse experts from all over South Dakota coming together to study the prevalence and impact of child sexual abuse in South Dakota. It identified six major goals that address a comprehensive approach towards ending child sexual abuse in the state. One of the goals identified includes the response of law enforcement and Child Protection Services.

“With Sanford Health leadership and generosity, the special victims unit can take a giant leap forward in being able to provide the services needed to investigate the maltreatment of children in our community,” said detective Nic Ahmann. “We can now take the next step in creating further partnerships with leaders in our area. The Child Advocacy Center will now have a place to call home but is seeking additional funds to open our doors to provide the services northeast South Dakota desperately needs.”

Those seeking more information regarding the implementation of this transforming work can contact Det. Nic Ahmann at 605-882-5238 ext 2.
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