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Meridian in the News

Staff profile: Eileen Moore

Aug 27

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Saturday, August 27, 2011  RssIcon

Eileen Moore has been working with children at Meridian Services for 18 years. She started as one of just a handful of clinical social workers on the staff and has been part of the organization’s phenomenal growth. Today, Moore is program manager for the Child Advocacy Center, which is part of Meridian’s Suzanne Gresham Center.

The advocacy center was established in 2007 as a haven for child abuse victims — and to help law enforcement bring perpetrators to justice. It is one of only four nationally accredited centers of its kind in Indiana, and the only one connected to a mental health facility.

Asked how many children have been served by the center, Moore can cite a precise number — 568, just in Delaware County. “Some people didn’t think the need was here in Delaware County.”

One of the important things the center does, Moore explained, is to make it easier for child victims by arranging for a single interview that is shared by police, prosecutors, child protection caseworkers and the center’s own professional staff. That reduces the traumatic experience for the victim while ensuring that evidence is gathered properly for prosecution. A victim advocate is assigned to help the family through the legal process.

As a result, more cases have been eligible for prosecution and more perpetrators have been compelled to confess their crimes. “It really is working the way it’s supposed to,” Moore said.

Moore also chairs another event, the annual walk for child abuse awareness every April, and she’s very proud of the Listening Tree mosaic at the Gresham Center. It’s made of individual ceramic panes with hooks on which little brass leaves have been hung, each with the name of a child. “That was one of my dreams.”

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