BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — The West Virginia Child Advocacy Network (WVCAN) released its Statewide Data for child abuse and response during the 2022 fiscal year (July 1, 2021 to June 30, 2022).

The data in the report reflects the service from West Virginia’s 21 Child Advocacy Centers (CACs) which provided official service to 45 of 55 counties in the state. A CAC provides a safe, child-friendly facility where child protection, criminal justice, and child treatment professionals work together to investigate abuse, hold offenders accountable, and help children heal.

During this past fiscal year, CACs served 4,703 children – a 20% increase in new children served in the last five years. Locally, the Just For Kids CAC saw 269 children.

Some of the highlights from the Just For Kids Child Advocacy Center’s report includes:

  • 55% of the children served were there because of allegations of sexual abuse
  • 45% of the children served by CACs were under the age of twelve
  • 20% of the children served by CACs were six years old or younger
  • 95% of alleged offenders were someone the child knew

“Just For Kids staff are essential members of the team that help children heal from the trauma of abuse. From making a child feel comfortable to tell their story, to supporting the family through the changes their child may experience are all important pieces in this work.”

West Virginia Child Advocacy Network Executive Director Scott Miller

The report includes more detailed data on victim demographics, alleged offender demographics, reported vs. disclosed abuse, services performed, criminal justice response, and CAC income budget breakdown.

The full statewide data report can be found here.