Ralston House was named the 2012 Outstanding Victim Services Program by the Colorado Organization for Victim Assistance (COVA) at its annual conference last week. Nominated for the award by other professionals, this award is presented to an organization that has provided superior service during the course of the year.
“In the 1st Judicial District, Ralston House is a leader in bringing agencies together to streamline services and perhaps more importantly, investigate cases,” said District Attorney Scott Storey in supporting the nomination. “This enables children to be able to tell their story in a safe, welcoming environment, and to a professional trained in working with traumatized kids.”
Storey presented the award to the Ralston House at the conference accompanied by Allison Boyd, Victim Assistance and Law Enforcement Board Administrator for Jefferson County.
The nomination stated, in part, that the Ralston House, “operate state-of-the-art facilities which are child-friendly, comfortable and welcoming. They hold regular trainings for professionals in a variety of topics related to child abuse. They facilitate stakeholder meetings to staff cases, educate professionals, maintain relationships with victim therapists, and perhaps most importantly on these types of cases, foster collaboration and a team approach. The agency provides ongoing group therapy for non-offending parents and prevention education, as well as maintaining a comprehensive referral list of therapists with expertise in working with child victims. For many years Ralston House has staged the annual “Heroes Party” for child victims whose cases have resolved, which honors both the children and all the professionals who handle this very difficult caseload.”
Daniel McCasky, Division Chief at the Lakewood Police Department, wrote, “Detectives from our department value the partnership we have formed with Ralston House and have told me that they could not do their jobs effectively without the services provided by Ralston House. It is this type of partnership that is needed today because criminals have become much more sophisticated in their in their efforts to victimize children. Although there are other advocacy centers in the metropolitan area, I have seen none that can match the excellence in service that Ralston House provides.”
Since 1990, Ralston House has provided a safe, comfortable place for children who have been sexually or physically abused to tell their stories so they can begin to heal. Ralston House receives referrals from law enforcement, social services and district attorney's office investigators and works in conjunction with these entities to provide specialized forensic interviews and medical examinations. Ralston House is a child-friendly place that is not "scary" as a police department might be. Children and teens are interviewed about their abuse in an environment where they are not retraumatized. Services are available at two locations in Jefferson County for youth 18 years and younger. Ralston House also provides free community presentations about child abuse prevention.
For more information about Ralston House, see www.ralstonhouse.net or contact Donald Moseley, Executive Director of Ralston House at 720-898-6745.