Ava's Story

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Ava's Story

This holiday season we're asking CAC supporters to help us give the gift of childhood. Each year over 800 children and families, just like Ava's come to the CAC looking for a place to begin healing from trauma. Donations help them get therapy services free of charge and give them a second chance at childhood. 


My name is Carol, and I’m a mom. There is more to me than that, but when I brought my daughter home form the hospital 6 years ago, my whole life changed. When Ava arrived I wanted to do everything to protect her and to give her the best childhood.

I taught her not to take candy from strangers and to look both ways before crossing the street. I watched her play make believe and have tea parties with princesses. Her laughter was infectious and my husband and I couldn’t help but giggle along with her.

It was the winter of 2015 when my daughter’s joyous laughter stopped. That’s when she lost her childhood. 

My husband and I started to see changes in Ava’s behavior. She went from being a happy, little kid who would wave and say goodbye when we dropped her off at daycare, to being absolutely terrified. Crying, hiding behind me and holding onto me so that I couldn't leave the room.

A counselor at Ava’s daycare sexually abused her. My heart still aches remembering the moment she told me what happened. The brightness in her eyes was gone, and I worried that she would never be the same again.

After Ava told us we called the police and were connected with the Children’s Advocacy Center. They say they’re a safe place for children to heal, but they helped our whole family begin to heal from the most painful event we’ve ever endured.

At CAC Ava met with her therapist every week for 2 months. She learned body safety, who to tell if something like this happens again, and how to deal with the anger she held inside of her. Little by little we saw an improvement in Ava. By the end of the 2 months she was becoming her old self again. Something I didn’t think was possible.

CAC gave Ava a second chance at childhood. The abuse against her does not define her. Over 800 children walk through the doors of CAC each year. 800 lives have been changed forever. When you donate to CAC you give so much more than a gift, you give a child, like Ava, the chance to heal and to reclaim her childhood.

Ava’s past can never be changed, but thanks to CAC she knows how to deal with the hurt, anger and pain. Because of the therapy she received here, Ava can be a kid again. Please support CAC and help give these children a second chance at childhood.


Family Support Services Client