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Davis House Provides Child Abuse Advocacy and Community Education

According to the National Children's Alliance, more than 600,000 children are abused in the U.S each year. That's a staggering number. But child advocacy centers, supporters of child-focused programs that investigate, prosecute, and treat child abuse are here to help. In fact, child welfare authorities ensure the safety of more than 7 million kids. That's where Tennessee's Davis House comes in.

The Davis House, established in 1999, has a mission to provide investigative, advocacy, family support, and therapeutic services to children who have experienced sexual or severe physical abuse or some other traumatic event, as well as trauma-informed community education.

The center was designed to provide a safe, child-friendly place for children to come following allegations of abuse and where they, and their non-offending caregivers, could receive services to help them through the healing process. According to Sam Crosby, Director of Advancement, since their inception, "Davis House has served over 9,000 children in Williamson, Lewis, Perry and Hickman counties, and 557 new child clients were served just in our area last year."

Unfortunately, child abuse happens in every community, regardless of socio-economic status, race, religion, education or ethnicity. Abuse happens in homes, schools, churches, daycares, neighborhoods and youth sports. Online abuse is also prevalent. 

Children are referred to Davis House after a report has been received from law enforcement or Department of Children Services alleging sexual or significant abuse. They provide support to families and individuals as to how to approach difficult conversations and situations.

The Davis House also offers community education and awareness programs at no cost to the community. Anyone who works with children or has children in their lives can benefit from their trainings. They train public and private schools, child care agencies, churches and faith-based organizations as well as many others groups.

Sam adds, "Our services are vital to keeping children safe from abuse and all of our services are provided at no cost." Davis House depends on funding from individuals, foundations and corporations, as they are not government-funded.

Due to the extremely sensitive nature of the organization’s work, volunteer opportunities are very limited. Readers are encouraged to follow Davis House on social media @davishousecac on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to stay informed. Special events and fundraisers also take place throughout the year to support the Davis House. The Button Ball is their annual gala and raised almost $220,000 last year. This year’s event will take place at Saint Elle in Nashville on August 26th.

By law, all adults 18 and older are required to report a known or suspected child abuse. To make a report, contact local law enforcement or the TN Child Abuse Hotline at 877-237-0004. If you have questions or need guidance, Davis House can provide information on how to file a report.

"Most people think we’re a government organization, and that we therefore do not need funding like other nonprofits. But that isn’t true. We are funded by the individuals, foundations, and corporations right here in our community, and we need your help." -- Sam Crosby

  • Executive Director Dr. Brent Hutchinson with Button Ball 2021 Keynote Speaker, Gold Medalist Aly Raisman
  • A happy couple at last year's Button Ball.