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Greater Richmond SCAN prevents and treats child abuse and neglect in the Greater Richmond area using best practices and by developing strong partnerships in the community. During the past 20 years, the growing commitment of volunteers, staff and local businesses has enabled SCAN to help the increasing number of children who need our help. As two SCAN supporters learned, child abuse has no boundaries—including children affected in the West End.
SCAN’s Child Advocacy Center (CAC) operates as a central intake location for children who have been severely physically or sexually abused. After initial physical examinations and forensic interviews, which often provide evidence in court, CAC staff members recommend next steps to healing and offer intensive on-site mental health treatment. While it’s easy to recognize the importance of SCAN’s work, the true value can be understood through the life-changing impact SCAN can have on just one child. Two supporters told this story:
Our neighbor visited the CAC and learned of an episode that involved a young boy who was tortured by his family, including getting burned on the back with a hot iron. The story was profoundly sad and shocking to her. Later, while at the local pool, she noticed that a child climbed out of the water bearing a scar on his back in the shape of an iron. She immediately knew that this was the same child she had heard about. While the boy seemed happy, she knew that the mark on his body was a just a physical manifestation of the emotional scar that also needed to heal. Because of the forensic interviews conducted at CAC and used in court, the boy was placed in a healthy, nurturing home.