The Child Advocacy Center is a program of BestSelf Behavioral Health.
The mission of the Child Advocacy Center at BestSelf is to integrate and coordinate services to meet the needs of child victims of sexual and serious physical abuse and their families at a single, child friendly facility. Such response is intended to reduce trauma, promote accountability and facilitate healing.
Children in their homes and in our community are healthy, safe and free from harm.
The inspiration for developing a CAC in Buffalo came in 1992 when a private citizen, Lee Gross Anthone, read an article in Lear’s magazine about child sexual victimization. The article showcased a CAC in California. When Ms. Anthone learned that no such facility existed in New York State, she organized a task force of concerned citizens and professionals to study how CACs were developed around the country. In 1993, Child and Adolescent Treatment Services took the lead as agency responsibility for the CAC. A combination of funds from Child and Adolescent Treatment Services, the federal and state government, and private sources including the United Way of Buffalo and Erie County enabled the CAC to open in 1994. The CAC was one of the first two CACs to open in New York State and served as a model for many developing centers including Canadian CACs. The CAC was initially housed in an office building on Delaware Avenue and in 1999 celebrated its re-location at 556 Franklin.