Community support needed to build new space for child abuse response service

July 27, 2018

Campaign launch attendees plant 1,000 butterfly ornaments to represent children treated each year at Alaska CARES

ANCHORAGE, Alaska –  Approximately 150 community members joined together to launch a public fundraising campaign July 26 to build a new space for Alaska CARES, the state’s largest evaluation center for children experiencing physical and sexual abuse.

Representatives from Providence Health & Services Alaska, Southcentral Foundation, Rasmuson Foundation and Providence Alaska Foundation, as well as Archbishop Roger Schwietz spoke at the event, which ended with attendees planting 1,000 butterfly ornaments to represent the average number of children who receive treatment at Alaska CARES each year.

“Our campaign uses butterflies to symbolize transformation because of a story we heard from an Alaska CARES caregiver,” said Scott Habberstad, president of the Providence Alaska Foundation board. “A 4-year-old trauma survivor told her ‘I hope my caterpillar turns into a butterfly soon.’ Thank you, each of you out there, for helping turn caterpillars into butterflies.” 

Alaska CARES is the state’s largest Child Advocacy Center and serves children, from newborns to age 18 years, from around the state. Alaska CARES is part of a community collaboration that provides treatment in a facility where victim advocates, law enforcement, child protection, tribal health, forensic medicine and mental health professionals are all located under one roof so they can work together to help victims.

Thanks to donations from Providence, Southcentral Foundation and Rasmuson Foundation among others, the campaign has achieved 86 percent of its goal. To date the campaign has raised $11.1 million of the $12.85 million needed, and with community support, the goal is within reach.

“We’re set to open Alaska CARES next April, and we’re confident with your help, and the community’s help, we’ll be able to close the last of that gap,” Habberstad added.

To learn more about Alaska CARES or donate, visit akcares.org.

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About Alaska CARES
Alaska CARES is an outpatient clinic located in Anchorage, Alaska. The clinic provides complete sexual and physical abuse evaluations for approximately 1,000 children each year, newborn to age 18 years, and 24-hour on-call services for cases that are considered emergent. Alaska CARES is a Children's Advocacy Center and a member of the National Children's Alliance, which is the governing body for more than 450 Children's Advocacy Centers across the United States. For more information about Alaska CARES, visit akcares.org.