ChildSafe will showcase its new forensic interview wing on Wednesday, October 2 at 10:30 a.m. at its main campus, located at 7130 West US Highway 90, San Antonio, TX 78227, with Harvey Najim and Bill Greehey, local philanthropists and supporters of the recently completed construction project. Najim and Greehey, as part of their foundations, donated the needed funds to renovate the space, which included building an additional interview suite to the existing two, and adding three much-needed offices for forensic interviewers to utilize while interacting with clients and their families.
The forensic interview suites are crucial to capturing a child’s outcry of abuse and assists Child Protective Services, Bexar County Sheriff’s Office, San Antonio Police Department, the District Attorney’s office, ChildSafe and others to determine what course of action should be taken. State-of-the-art recording equipment is part of each suite, essential to capturing via video a child’s discussion with a professionally trained forensic interviewer. This is critical because it means the child only has to convey the traumatic event of abuse one time instead of multiple times, as they did before Children’s Advocacy Centers were established.
While the forensic interviewing component of ChildSafe is housed in their main building, the interviewers are county employees, forging a unique partnership with ChildSafe and Bexar County.
“We are proud to work with Bexar County and our other partners to ensure childrens’ voices are heard,” said Kim Abernethy, ChildSafe CEO. “And we could not do this important work if it were not for the generosity of community leaders that give their hearts and money to causes that make a difference in the lives of Bexar County children,” she said.
“My foundation is committed to San Antonio’s children, and the critical services that ChildSafe performs in helping San Antonio’s families heal from childhood trauma in the form of abuse and neglect,” said Harvey Najim, founder of the Najim Family Foundation. “We are pleased to support the difficult and vital work that the team at ChildSafe performs daily, and are happy to have helped underwrite their new forensic interview wing,” he said.
“Protecting the health and well-being of children is really the highest priority for the Greehey Family Foundation, so supporting the construction of this facility was a natural fit for us,” said Bill Greehey. “The forensic interview wing represents a critical first step in helping abused and neglected children to identify abuse that exists in their lives, and then hopefully move on from there to overcome the trauma they have endured and live happy, healthy lives,” said Greehey.
ChildSafe is Bexar County’s only Children’s Advocacy Center. They perform forensic interviews, crisis intervention, case management services, counseling, and advanced therapy to aid in the healing of child victims of abuse and neglect. And they work with law enforcement and prosecutors to bring perpetrators to justice.
For more information about ChildSafe, please visit www.childsafe-sa.org or call (210) 675-9000.