The Great Work That NACA Does for Native American Children and Their Rights

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Today I wanted to raise awareness of NACA. They do excellent work in the United States. Here’s an overview of what they do, their ethos, and their activities.

Since 1999, Native American and Alaskan communities have been participating in NACA sponsored regional and national trainings to improve their response to the needs of children who have been victims of child abuse.

NACA’s work helps to inspire and support the development, growth, and maintenance of Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs) and Multi-Disciplinary Teams (MDT) in Indian Country.

groupshotNACA was formed in April of 1999 and held its first formal meeting on September 26, 1999 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

It received its non-exempt tax status is June, 2001 and shortly there after became a chapter of the National Children’s Alliance. It has a close partnership with National Indian Child Welfare Association.

The Native American Children’s Alliance was formed in response to the need for tribal Child Advocacy Center development. Child Advocacy Centers (CACs) bring together a multi-disciplinary team (MDT) that includes prosecutors, law enforcement and child protection investigators, mental health and medical professionals, victim advocates and more to coordinate response and service to victims of child abuse.

Many professionals did not believe it was possible to develop CAC’s in Indian Country given the challenges involved in multi-jurisdictional coordination, lack of sustainability of current child abuse program initiatives, facility–based programming, and lack of community resources to sponsor the “mainstream” funding model for CAC’s.

NACA was formed to support existing tribal CAC programs and to promote the development of CAC’s and MDT’s in tribal communities.

NACA is committed to protecting Native children and eliminating children’s physical, sexual, psychological and spiritual abuse by providing awareness, training, building partnerships in a respectful way which honors tribal sovereignty, empowers communities, and develops tribal readiness for Seven Generations.

NACA was established to enhance the safety and well-being of all Native/Alaskan Native children and is well known for providing annual trainings to develop CACs for Indian Country. NACA can assess a community’s abilities to provide services regarding:

  • Development of multidisciplinary teams
  • Development of interagency agreements and protocols
  • Increasing community understanding of child abuse
  • Increasing prevention and intervention services
  • Identifying valuable resources for maintaining programs
  • Preparation for accreditation by the National Children’s Alliance

NACA has been expanding outreach to urban Indian populations and has developed Native-specific guides/materials to support development of CACs.