The mission of A Kid's Place is to provide advocacy and support for abused or neglected children by advancing coordinated investigations, prosecution and victim services through the CASA Program and Child Advocacy Center.
A Kid's Place was founded in 1995 by the Weld County Child Abuse Coalition as the child abuse assessment center for Weld County. In 1989, United Way of Weld County undertook a needs assessment to identify significant community health and human service problems within Weld County. Gaps in service delivery and agency coordination in the child abuse arena were the most critical issues identified by this community-wide evaluation process. The Weld County Child Abuse Coalition was formed under the auspices of United Way to create solutions to these needs. Pilot projects of the Coalition would be formed as internal programs of United Way until they could be evaluated for effectiveness and then developed into separate non-profit agencies. The Child Advocacy Center and CASA programs are both such programs. The Child Advocacy Center (CAC) was formed in 1995 to reduce trauma to victims of child abuse by providing a multidisciplinary response in a neutral, child-friendly environment. CASA of Weld County was created in 1997 to train community volunteers to speak for the best interests of abused and neglected children within the court system, and to advocate for timely case resolution. In July of 2000, CASA merged with A Kid's Place. This merger enables us to provide a continuum of services to the abused and neglected children involved in the criminal and Dependency and Neglect court system. Since January 2010, we have operated a satellite CAC in south Weld County, now located in Ft. Lupton to better serve children and families in that section of the county.
In January 2016, A Kid's Place added a "Doing Business As" and re-branded our logo and website. We chose the name Life Stories Child & Family Advocacy because we felt that it uniquely and succinctly summarized and united our two programs and will be a driving force in our future decades of work. Our message remains the same: children and special needs adults who experience abuse and neglect deserve our attention, advocacy and support.
In April 2017, our agency purchased a building and are in the process of renovating it to better serve the increasing numbers of child victims of abuse in our community, with a planned relocation in Fall 2018.
Over 25 years ago, our community came together and realized there was a better way to address the issue of child abuse. There was not a Child Advocacy Center or a CASA Program then, but with much hard work and coordination came the formation of A Kid's Place. Since opening our doors, Life Stories Child & Family Advocacy (formerly A Kid's Place) has played a transformative role in helping our community's most vulnerable children.
Every child's story is an integral part of the work that we do. Our forensic interviewers, family advocates, CASA staff and volunteers hear stories of abuse and neglect every day. We then provide advocacy, support, and resources to help children turn their stories into ones of strength and hope. With the added support of our Board of Directors, our Multi Disciplinary Team and community partners, we are honored to help abused children turn the page for a better tomorrow.
We invite you to learn more about us and how you can help.
Sincerely, Gwen Schooley, Executive Director and Kim McClain, Chair, Board of Directors