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Teresa Huizar
Teresa Huizar has worked with the children's advocacy movement in various capacities since 1993. Over the past 16 years, Ms. Huizar has assisted in successfully passing legislation and creating policy initiatives on the local, state and national levels, supporting and advancing the child abuse prevention, intervention and advocacy movement. Ms. Huizar’s professional experience includes leadership positions with two Children's Advocacy Centers in Colorado, United Way of Weld County, Colorado, and the Western Regional Children's Advocacy Center. She has also published reports and technical assistance manuals on organizational development for Children's Advocacy Centers, a cost-benefit analysis of the interdisciplinary model used by accredited Children's Advocacy Centers around the country, and a gap analysis of service coverage for Children's Advocacy Centers in both the western region and the United States as a whole.

Entries by Teresa Huizar

Animals Get More Support Than Kids. Even Animals Agree That's Wrong.

(2) Comments | Posted December 18, 2015 | 6:42 AM

Nala, the Toledo Therapy Dog

When abused children come to the Children's Advocacy Center in Toledo, Ohio, gentle Nala comforts them as they disclose the unspeakable things that have happened to them, as they cry, and as they heal. Today, the 100 pounds of...

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When Child Sexual Abuse Is in the Public Eye, Don't Lose Sight of the Children

(1) Comments | Posted August 28, 2015 | 1:09 PM


Each year, official government reports indicate that more than 62,000 children are sexually abused. The numbers are especially staggering for girls aged 14-17, of whom researchers estimate more than 17% have experienced sexual abuse. While we know sexual abuse...

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In Response to the Duggar Family: Responding to Sexual Behavior Problems in Youth

(14) Comments | Posted June 10, 2015 | 5:24 PM

With so much attention in the media this past week regarding the Duggar family and the actions of their eldest son Josh when he was a teenager, numerous issues have been raised surrounding sexual behavior problems in youth, and how parents and caregivers can appropriately respond. For Children's...

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Congress, Reinstate Funding for the Victims of Child Abuse Act: Support Abused Children Across the Country

(0) Comments | Posted June 26, 2013 | 4:12 PM

More than twenty years later, I still remember the first child that disclosed to me she had been sexually abused. I was sitting in a fourth-grade classroom talking about body safety with a roomful of these kids sitting at my feet, when in front of the whole class Tiffany* told...

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Let's Protect Children 365 Days of the Year

(0) Comments | Posted April 5, 2013 | 11:50 AM

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month and I'm delighted that this issue receives well-deserved attention this time of year. However, what is needed in this country is not so much a special emphasis during one month of the year, but rather a deep commitment to the protection...

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After the Conviction: The Legacy of the Jerry Sandusky Case

(0) Comments | Posted October 16, 2012 | 1:01 PM

Days ago, Jerry Sandusky was sentenced to 30 to 60 years in prison for sexually assaulting 10 boys over a 15 year period. We all breathed a collective sigh of relief that he will spend the rest of his life in prison for these crimes. While we may find some...

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In the Wake of the Sandusky Case: Lessons Learned and Hope for Victims of Child Abuse

(4) Comments | Posted June 28, 2012 | 2:00 PM

The Jerry Sandusky case, and the Penn State handling of the disclosures of sexual abuse, have opened a national conversation around child sexual abuse in some unique ways. In the wake of the verdict, we have all been presented with lessons for victims, organizations, and society as a whole.


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Are You One With Courage?: A Call to Action to Support National Child Abuse Prevention Month

(0) Comments | Posted April 3, 2012 | 8:59 AM

Courage is a word we typically associate with soldiers, firefighters, policemen and women, and others fighting on the frontlines to keep all of us safe from harm. But courage can also be ascribed to those who push fear, stigma and discomfort aside to talk about that which society keeps in...

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Taking Action To Protect America's Children

(2) Comments | Posted December 23, 2011 | 11:26 AM

On December 13, I had the honor of participating in an important moment for the child advocacy field. As one of six panelists to testify in front of the United States Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee (HELP), Subcommittee on Children and Families, I joined my fellow...

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Suspected Child Abuse: Mandated Reporting or Moral Obligation?

(3) Comments | Posted November 16, 2011 | 11:51 AM

As the Director of National Children's Alliance, the national association and accrediting body for 739 Children's Advocacy Centers across the country, I hear accounts of 260,000 victims of child sexual abuse each year. Each one is a personal tragedy for the victim, but mostly a private grief for...

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Breaking the Silence on Child Abuse in America

(112) Comments | Posted October 23, 2011 | 7:10 PM

In response to the recently aired investigative news report on child abuse fatalities in the United States by the BBC, I want to call attention to the importance of child advocacy in the U.S. This issue deserves our attention now more than ever before.


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Localizing the Children's Advocacy Center Movement on a Global Scale

(0) Comments | Posted August 16, 2011 | 12:48 PM

There are systems in place around the world designed to protect abused and neglected children. Unfortunately, these systems often take a segmented approach, creating a further traumatizing experience for children and families who report abuse.

Prior to 1985, the social services and criminal justice systems in the United States...

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A Call to End 'The National Media Blackout on Child Abuse'

(0) Comments | Posted February 15, 2011 | 11:07 AM

Every day in America, there are an estimated seven children who die from abuse or neglect -- some 2,500 per year (expert estimate of actual deaths). In 2010, the number of reported child maltreatment deaths (1,740) was far higher than the number of reported child deaths...

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New Report on Background Checks for School Employees Questions Safety of Our Children

(2) Comments | Posted December 22, 2010 | 11:29 AM

Recently, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a study on the lack of criminal history checks conducted on teachers and corresponding rates of sexual misconduct by school staff. As the Executive Director of National Children's Alliance, the accrediting body for children's advocacy centers around the country and internationally, I am...

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No Summer Vacation for Child Abuse

(0) Comments | Posted August 23, 2010 | 10:43 AM

For many children, August is the last hurrah of summer - the last moment to enjoy long, lazy days before school sets back in. But for many other children, summer is no different from the rest of the year. School may be out, but child abuse is not. A new...

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Fundraising in Rural America

(0) Comments | Posted July 19, 2010 | 10:34 AM

All too often, when we think of fundraising, we focus on efforts and resources that are really only applicable to metropolitan settings. Foundations are more likely to be located in cities, and traditional fundraisers, such as galas and auctions, cater to an urban crowd. It is important to recognize that...

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