Child Advocacy Centers in the United States and Music Therapy
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Keywords

music therapy
Children’s Advocacy Center

How to Cite

Blank, C. (2018). Child Advocacy Centers in the United States and Music Therapy. Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy, 18(4). https://doi.org/10.15845/voices.v18i4.2589

Abstract

In the United States, children who suffer trauma or abuse receive services through Children’s Advocacy Centers (CACs). Over 800 CACs provided treatment and services to nearly 325,000 children in 2016 (National Children’s Alliance, 2016b).  CACs coordinate the work of multidisciplinary teams (MDT) including law enforcement, mental health, medical, and social service personnel to help children and families heal. CACs are autonomous groups made up of affiliations with many local agencies. This article provides a description of the National Children’s Alliance (NCA) standards for implementing treatment, including the state of music therapy implementation in CACs. The literature has shown that music therapy can be helpful to address needs of children and families who have experienced trauma, suggesting that this may offer a helpful treatment modality in CACs. However, music therapy is rarely available in CACs. This may be, in part, a result of the lack of randomized controlled trials, a key determining factor for inclusion in the annotated bibliography that accompanies the NCA Standards (National Children’s Alliance, 2013). Music therapy practice has addressed the clinical needs of children and teens who have been abused. This work is often presented in clinical reflections, not randomized controlled trials. Music therapy is currently not included in the treatment modalities utilized by CACs because of a perceived lack of evidence base. This article attempts to synthesize the information available to provide CACs with the current state of research in music therapy with children who have been abused. This article also provides music therapists with a depth of information about the structure and function of CACs, including a synthesis of the NCA Standards of Practice. The article presents a description for the implementation of music therapy services in a CAC in New Jersey and includes recommendations for music therapists who wish to seek out opportunities for clinical practice at CACs

https://doi.org/10.15845/voices.v18i4.2589
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