On August 4, 2016, the Public Building Commission of Chicago (PBC) will join Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center (ChicagoCAC) at the new addition to their facility, 1240 S. Damen, for the Center’s 15th anniversary celebration of being front-line responders to reports of child sexual and physical abuse.
The event will highlight milestones in the Center’s history and recognize the outstanding staff members, partners and supporters who have served more than 30,000 children and families affected by sexual and physical abuse.
“At ChicagoCAC, our focus is entirely on children and families healing from abuse,” ChicagoCAC Executive Director Char Rivette, MSW, LCSW said. “Our building is an embodiment of our mission. It is bright and colorful, bringing hope from the second you walk in. It provides privacy, but it’s open to facilitate collaboration among all of our partners. And most importantly, it’s home to the incredible staff, our family advocates, forensic interviewers, therapists and other professionals who have helped more than 30,000 children and families heal from child sexual abuse.”
In 2001, the PBC oversaw the construction of the 24,000-square-foot facility that incorporates bright colors, shapes and other child-friendly features to minimize the trauma experienced by many of these youth.
In 2015, the PBC completed the construction of an 18,000-square-foot addition to the Center. The new space accommodates ChicagoCAC’s expanded programmatic efforts and includes an education center, therapy rooms, a new entrance and staff offices. The PBC served as the developer for both projects, coordinated the design and procurement and managed construction.
“ChicagoCAC is the City’s only not-for-profit organization that coordinates the efforts of child protection staff, law enforcement professionals, family advocates, medical experts and mental health clinicians under one roof,” Felicia S. Davis, Executive Director of the Public Building Commission said. “It was an honor for the PBC to construct such a visually stimulating facility that assists in supporting children and their families as they begin the healing process.”
The expansion doubles the center’s capacity to provide mental health services for children who are sexually abused, adds dedicated space for professional and community trainings, improves the quality and number of child- and family-friendly areas for clients and ensures that the physical environment of the center is trauma-informed and conducive to collaboration among members of the center’s co-located, multi-disciplinary teams.
In addition to the non-profit’s 60-member staff, the building is home to experts from the Chicago Police Department, Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office and Cook County Health and Hospitals System. Each year, center staff responds to nearly 2,000 reports of child sexual and physical abuse.
About the center: In 2001, ChicagoCAC opened the doors of its 24,000-square-foot facility, designed by Stanley Tigerman. In spring 2015, the center opened a new addition designed by Holabird & Root, incorporating elements of the original design, while also offering a fresh interpretation of the facility’s purpose as a collaborative, child-centered environment. Further, the expansion is expected to attain LEED Gold certification, based on green design and construction features. In June, PBC was honored with a Chicago Building Congress 2016 Merit Award for the project.
About Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center: Founded by Mayor Daley in 1998, Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center and its partners are the city’s front-line responders to reports of child sexual abuse, as well as reports of physical abuse of children under age 3. Learn more by visiting ChicagoCAC.org.
About the Public Building Commission: The Public Building Commission of Chicago manages construction and renovation projects for the City of Chicago and its sister agencies. Mayor Rahm Emanuel serves as the PBC’s chairman. Felicia S. Davis serves as the Executive Director of the PBC. Additional information about the PBC and its projects can be found at www.pbcchicago.com. You can also follow the Public Building Commission of Chicago on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Flickr.