National Children’s Alliance Receives $97,000+ Grant from Ronald McDonald House Charities to Expand Mental Health Services to Victims of Child Abuse in Mississippi

Mental health issues impact two-thirds of child abuse victims in the U.S., grant will increase access to mental health services to this vulnerable population

Washington, D.C.

National Children’s Alliance and its Mississippi Chapter, Children’s Advocacy Centers of Mississippi, are the recipients of a one-year grant from Ronald McDonald House Charities® (RMHC®) totaling $97,389 that will fund the introduction of Evidence-based Mental Health Assessment for Abused Children in children’s advocacy centers across Mississippi.

This model teaches professionals how to administer, score and interpret the Trauma Symptom Checklist for Children, Trauma Symptom Checklist for Young Children, and the Child Sexual Behavior Inventory – in order to diagnose and treat traumatic stress, depression and aggression among maltreated children. The Evidence-based Mental Health Assessment for Abused Children has seen tremendous results in other parts of the country.

“All too often children suffer from the trauma of abuse in ways that can profoundly impact the rest of their lives,” stated Teresa Huizar, Executive Director of National Children’s Alliance. “This grant enables National Children’s Alliance and our state chapter in Mississippi to expand mental health services to abused children throughout the state by carefully assessing their trauma symptoms and then ensuring they receive the care they need to heal. We look forward to leveraging these dollars and are grateful to RMHC for investing in this important effort.”

“For 40 years, we have worked to bring people together to find solutions that strengthen children and families during difficult times,” said RMHC President and CEO J.C. Gonzalez-Mendez. “There are children around the world that do not have access to the vital resources needed to support their health. We’re privileged to work with nine organizations around the world this year that are helping to solve that issue and making a meaningful difference in the lives of millions.”

Over the next year, National Children’s Alliance and Children’s Advocacy Centers of Mississippi intend to connect children’s advocacy center directors, therapists and clinicians to nine hours of training and provide up to 24 hours of consultation, case review and supervision. The project aims to help 500 children in the next year, and is expected to benefit thousands of children in the future.

As stated by Karla Tye, Executive Director of Children’s Advocacy Centers of Mississippi, “We are thrilled to be the co-recipient of this grant and look forward to working hand-in-hand with National Children’s Alliance to deliver much needed services to child advocacy professionals in our state. Ultimately, it is our state’s most vulnerable children who will benefit and we are hopeful that the long-term results will be positive.”

In 2013 children’s advocacy centers across the nation served 294,781 victims of child abuse; two-thirds of this group required mental health services as a result of experiencing abuse.

For more information about National Children’s Alliance visit

About National Children’s Alliance
National Children’s Alliance is the national association and accrediting body for the over 770 Children’s Advocacy Centers and 47 State Chapters serving each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Dedicated to helping local communities respond to allegations of child abuse in ways that are effective and efficient, and put the needs of child victims of abuse first, National Children’s Alliance provides support and advocacy to its accredited membership, as well as numerous developing centers, multidisciplinary teams and child abuse professionals around the country, and the world. As the national authority on multidisciplinary approaches to supporting child victims of abuse, the purpose of National Children’s Alliance is to empower local communities to provide comprehensive, coordinated and compassionate services to victims of child abuse. Founded in 1990, National Children’s Alliance provides accreditation opportunities, financial assistance, training, technical assistance, research and education to communities, child abuse professionals and children’s advocacy centers throughout the United States in support of child abuse intervention, advocacy and prevention.

About Ronald McDonald’s House Charities
Ronald McDonald House Charities® (RMHC®), a non-profit, 501 (c) (3) corporation, creates, finds and supports programs that directly improve the health and well-being of children. Through its global network of 300 Chapters in more than 62 countries and regions, its three core programs, the Ronald McDonald House®, the Ronald McDonald Family Room® and the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile®, and millions of dollars in grants to support children’s programs worldwide, RMHC provides stability and vital resources to families so they can get and keep their children healthy and happy. All RMHC-operated and supported programs, enable family-centered care, provide a bridge to quality health care, are a vital part of the health care continuum and give children and families the time they need to heal and cope better together. RMHC is the 2014 Harris Poll EquiTrend® Social Services Non-Profit Brand of the Year.

About Children’s Advocacy Centers of Mississippi
The Children’s Advocacy Centers of Mississippi is an Accredited Chapter of the National Children’s Alliance. The primary goal of Children’s Advocacy Centers of Mississippi is to provide training, support, and leadership on a statewide level to local child advocacy centers and professionals throughout Mississippi responding to reports of child abuse. For more information about CACM, please visit