To help children and families by ensuring collaborative child abuse investigations and advocacy, in a safe child-friendly environment.
First Light Overview
The Center is a non-profit organization that offers all services to child victims and non-offending family members at no cost. CNCAC serves victims of physical abuse, sexual assault, witness to a violent crime, placed in a drug endangered environment, and/or are recovered from a kidnapping are interviewed by forensically-trained professionals in a relaxed manner.
First Light Central Nebraska Child Advocacy Center (CNCAC) proudly serves the following 10 Nebraska counties; Hall, Howard, Hamilton, Merrick, Garfield, Greeley, Clay, Nuckolls, Webster and Wheeler. However, through collaboration with other child advocacy center’s within the State of Nebraska, we do offer courtesy interviews.
The First Light CNCAC Environment
First Light CNCAC is a child-friendly and safe environment where children can express themselves in a relaxed setting.
Benefits of Accessing First Light CNCAC
- Limiting the number of times a child is interviewed.
- Interviewed by certified trained forensic interviewers.
- Quality support and advocacy.
- Referral to licensed therapists who are trained to address traumatic issues.
- Trained medical personnel to complete forensic medical exams.
- Hair and nail follicle tests to determine if a child is exposed to drugs.
- MDT coordination to ensure each child receives appropriate services.
- Assist and prepare children and families for upcoming court hearings.
- Case management and case coordination.
Services Provided by First Light CNCAC
- Forensic Interviews: A fact finding video and audio recorded interview of children generally aged 3 – 18 years of age who are alleging physical abuse, sexual assault, witness to a violent crime, placed in a drug endangered environment, and/or recovered from a kidnapping.
- Advocacy: Providing support to child victims and non-offending family members through the investigation, court process, and receiving appropriate resources for addressing the trauma.
- Case Management: The First Light CNCAC Child and Family Services Advocate is available to provide on-going advocacy, case tracking, and monitoring throughout the case.
- Referral: First Light CNCAC has established linkage agreements with licensed therapists who have completed the necessary trauma training and can provide timely and quality services to the child-victims and non-offending family members served at the Center.
- Multi-disciplinary Teams (MDT): The Center’s MDT Coordinator is responsible for coordinating meetings within each county that includes law enforcement, county attorney, Health and Human Services, school staff, mental health providers, medical personnel, and a variety of other community providers who can actively respond to investigations and address appropriate treatment measures within a confidential setting.
- Medical: Trained medical personnel are available to provide forensic sexual assault examinations, forensic medical examinations and wellness checks for child victims 3-18 years of age seen at the Center where a need is evident to assist with ensuring their health is cared for and for investigative purposes.
- Hair Testing: At the request of Health and Human Services, law enforcement, and county attorneys; trained First Light CNCAC personnel provide hair or nail follicle testing on child-victims to determine if they are placed in a drug endangered environment.
- Training: A variety of trainings are offered by First Light CNCAC personnel, which include: CNCAC 101, Child Abuse and Neglect (CAN) 101, Introduction to Reporting, Darkness to Light and our annual training that includes bringing a national speaker to Central Nebraska.
- Outreach: The Center welcomes opportunities to come and speak at your business, agency, and/or community group about the services provided at First Light CNCAC and the value of reporting; at no cost to you.