The Walker County Children’s Advocacy Center (WCCAC) was recently awarded full membership into the Alabama Network of Child Advocacy Centers.
Becoming a full member is a multi-year process, WCCAC Executive Director Johnny Sudberry said. The center applied a few years ago to begin the process, having to meet and show evidence of strict standards of practice. The center was a pilot center, then an associate member before earning full member status.
“After becoming an associate member, we were able to move to full membership within two years,” WCCAC Executive Director Johnny Sudberry said. “This gives us a higher level of credibility. That’s an accomplishment for us to move that quickly. This could not have happened without the support of a lot of people.”
Sudberry thanked his board of directors for its leadership. Members include Walker County District Attorney Bill Adair, Brad Ingle, Maurice Ingle, Brandy Lee, Sandi Sudduth, Loryane Vague, Angela Washington and Kathleen Williams.
“They provide unselfish oversight,” Sudberry added.
He also thanked the WCCAC’s multi-disciplinary team, which consists of members from the Department of Human Resources, local law enforcement agencies and the district attorney’s office.
Adair said he is proud of the children’s advocacy center for this designation.
“To now be full members of ANCAC is quite an accomplishment for our center, especially to do it so quickly,” he said. “It is a testament to the people who work there, the board of directors and the entire community.”
Sudberry said their partners in funding the center are also vital in the work done there.
“We are grateful to the cities of Jasper, Sumiton, Dora, the Walker Area Community Foundation, and the many individuals, churches, and civic organizations for their financial support,” he said. “I also thank the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA) for our grants they have provided through the years. One of the things ANCAC and ADECA look for is community support and I am proud we have so much.”
Since opening in 2013, the center has served approximately 1,200 children and family members who have been affected by abuse.
“I am thankful for the wonderful team I work with every day,” Sudberry said. “They pour their hearts into their work each day to make the lives of the children we serve better. While we wish there was no need for the services we offer, we are extremely proud that children have a safety net at our CAC.”