Intake & New Cases

McMahon/Ryan Child Advocacy Center accepts referrals from the Child Abuse Referral and Evaluation Program (CARE), Law Enforcement, Child Protective Services and other collaborating agencies.  However, if you have questions, concerns, or are unsure where to begin, we encourage you to call and speak to one of the Child and Family Advocates at (315) 701-2985.

Child and Family Advocates

When you arrive at McMahon/Ryan, you will be greeted in a safe, child-friendly environment by a Child and Family Advocate.  The Child and Family Advocate will help provide a support system for the victims of child abuse and their families through court assistance, mental health referrals, and by offering ongoing case management services.  The Child and Family Advocate works with non-offending family members and child victims in order to promote healing and growth.  They facilitate and coordinate with a variety of other agencies including the Child Abuse Response Team (CART).  The Child and Family Advocate will work with you each step of the way so that you do not have to go through this alone.

CARE Intake & Exam

The CARE Evaluation consists of CARE staff (social worker, nurse practitioner, and physician) meeting with the child’s caregiver and obtaining information about  why the child is being seen at CARE as well as conducting a medical and psychosocial history of the child.  There may also be a child advocate present for the history.  The CARE staff do not “interview” children about their suspected abuse.

After the history is complete, the doctor and nurses will perform a head to toe physical exam of the child; this is usually an external exam only.  The doctor may do some  medical testing if it is necessary.  The CARE team asks the children who they want in the exam room with them  (if they are old enough) and explain everything that they are going to do.

After the exam is complete, the doctor or nurse practitioner will explain the exam results and any testing that was done.  They will also answer any questions and discuss follow up recommendations.

Interview process

When a family arrives at McMahon/Ryan Child Advocacy Center, a law enforcement detective or child protective services investigator will meet with the parents to explain the process and what will happen during the interview.  The trained detective and/or child protective investigator will talk to the child in one of the child-friendly interview rooms.  After the interview, the detective and/or child protective services investigator will meet with the parent to discuss the next steps.

Mental Health

McMahon/Ryan Child Advocacy Center has three therapists on-site and works with many local mental health professionals to provide individual, family, and group counseling to those affected by child abuse.

Additional resources

If you suspect that a child is being abused, call Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-342-3720