2017 marks 20 years since CALICO first opened its doors. In this time, CALICO has helped more than 11,500 children achieve justice and healing. To understand how important this anniversary is, it is vital to look back at what child abuse cases were like 20 years ago.
On Sunday, April 2nd Oakland will hosted thousands of runners for the Oakland Running Festival. In this crowd of thousands is a group of people who come with the goal to to help children. These are the Team CALICO runners. A group of people (or heroes) who have volunteered to use their runs to help achieve justice and healing for abused children and their families.
When Ally, a junior at a local high school, reached out to CALICO to donate stuffed animals we were grateful. However, when we learned what had inspired her generosity we were deeply moved.
At CALICO's 12th Annual One Child at a Time Benefit: Picnic in the Park a young woman, named Emely, took the stage and spoke about her experience as a child abuse survivor. Emely's brave words moved many to tears and inspired everyone there.
CALICO’s 12th Annual Fundraiser, and One Child at a Time Picnic, is just around the corner! It’s a wonderful event, filled with fun and games. Please join us on Saturday, September 24th at Preservation Park, Oakland.
CALICO is dedicated to ensuring we can provide prompt, quality services to all families who are referred to us, regardless of the circumstances, as was the case with 8-year-old Linda who recently came to CALICO in the middle of the night.
For a child, telling someone that he or she has been abused, especially sexually abused, can be one of the hardest, scariest moments in life. To help provide more resources, CALICO’s State Coordinator, Erin Harper, spoke in support of a bill that would help give children tools to disclose abuse.
We are pleased to introduce this issue’s hero, Meghan Arnold, who will be running with CALICO for her 5th time at the Oakland Running Festival. Meghan believes it is important to give a voice to those who don’t always have one and feels that running with CALICO was an excellent way to raise awareness.
At our One Child at a Time Benefit, a young boy wanted to do his part to make a difference in the lives of abused children. Read about 8 year-old Pranav and his generous donation to CALICO.
“You mean people made this place just for kids like me?” asked one 12-year-old boy in an amazed voice after proclaiming CALICO’s office “hecka nice.” He went on to marvel at the comfortable furniture in the interview room and flat screen TV and toys in the waiting area and wondered where they came from. A CALICO staff member told him many different people and groups make donations to support CALICO’s work. That day, this boy made an important discovery – he learned that people he did not even know cared about him and other children like him.
Working within a multi-disciplinary team allows CALICO to make sure that each child’s unique needs are met. Maintaining multi-disciplinary partnerships can be hard work, but when everyone comes together to help a child, we know it’s worth it.
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month (CAPM), a month recognized as a time for communities to join together to promote healthy children and families and end child abuse. Since CALICO’s inception, it has used CAPM to highlight child abuse in Alameda County. However, the federal focus on child abuse prevention is relatively recent.
2014 has been a very busy year at CALICO. This year alone, we have provided services to over 700 children, supported over 500 parents and caregivers, and conducted over 25 trainings for community members and professionals. We are honored to be an active part of the efforts to respond to and end child abuse.
All of the funds raised at CALICO’s One Child at a Time Picnic support CALICO’s forensic interviewing and family support services. Picnic donations allow CALICO the flexibility to ensure we can provide prompt, quality services to all families, regardless of whether or not that family is eligible for services under other restrictive funding CALICO receives.
Studies indicate that the overwhelming majority of children tell the truth when they disclose abuse. Yet when children report abuse, it is common for adults to think children are mistaken or making up stories.
CALICO conducts interviews for jurisdictions outside of Alameda County when needed, rather than detectives asking a child questions over the phone or inconveniencing a family to travel. Crimes that involve online abuse and exploitation often require more resourceful methods of investigation, as was the case with what happened to twelve-year-old Tabitha.
With the testimony of just one victim, detectives can apprehend an offender and prevent numerous other children from harm. While at CALICO, cousins Mindy and Sylvia bravely shared what happened to them to avoid further abuse.
A large part of CALICO’s success in aiding abused children stems from multiple agencies working together to share information and decide the best approach for investigations. That effective collaboration helped 10-year-old Bailey and her family reach a positive resolution in the face of a horrible crime.
Investigating crimes against persons with developmental disabilities presents unique challenges, but CALICO staff are trained to deal with victims of all age and developmental levels. At CALICO, Yolanda provided precise details about a traumatic incident that occurred several years earlier.
What happened to my son was a parent’s worst nightmare. However, our experience at CALICO was nothing but positive. I am thankful to both the interviewer and the Family Resource Specialist for making us both feel so comfortable.”
—Mother who utilized CALICO’s services