Many children and youth experience domestic and sexual violence in their homes, and are often primary or secondary victims of abuse. In homes where abuse is prevalent, there are serious implications. The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study explains that children and youth exposed to violence in their homes are at greater risk of suffering from the following negative behaviors and poor health outcomes:
- Alcoholism and alcohol abuse
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
- Fetal death
- Illicit drug use
- Ischemic heart disease
- Liver disease
- Risk for perpetrating or becoming a victim of domestic violence
- Multiple sexual partners
- Suicide attempts
- Unintended pregnancies, and
- Juvenile and adult criminal behavior
Without early intervention and advocacy, these children are at risk for participating in and/or experiencing a series of at-risk behaviors that could follow them into adulthood, thereby perpetuating the generational patterns of abuse.
To help those exposed to abuse, CASA offers a comprehensive children’s program designed to give children a safe place to discuss and express their emotions related to the violence in their homes. Children and youth may access CASA’s residential or non-residential services in the forms of: shelter, free therapy services, teen dating violence information, anti-bullying programming, support groups, court advocacy, and more. To learn more about the services available to children and youth who are dealing with domestic and/or sexual violence, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.