Special Projects Fund

Project Title

Southern Tier Child Advocacy Center of Allegany County

Grant Amount


Priority Area

Special Projects Fund

Date Awarded

December 1, 2008


Finger Lakes

Western NY






Under an earlier grant from the New York Health Foundation (NYHealth), Southern Tier Health Care System opened the Southern Tier Child Advocacy Center (STCAC) in Cattaraugus County, which helps children who have experienced physical and sexual abuse from both Cattaraugus and Allegany counties.

Soon after services were under way, the STCAC discovered that a majority of abuse cases from Allegany County (80 %) were not brought to the STCAC because of the long distance from some parts of Allegany County to the STCAC. The STCAC quickly adopted the goal of better serving children who experience abuse in Allegany County by establishing a satellite STCAC for the County, which would be approved by the Office of Child and Family Services and accredited by the National Children’s Alliance. The Southern Tier Health Care System received a second grant from NYHealth to support this initiative.

There are an estimated 600 cases of child abuse per year in Allegany County. With no accessible abuse center in Allegany County, some 80% of the area’s physically and sexually abused children do not receive needed care.

Southern Tier Health Care System, Inc. (STHCS) is expanding its services to child abuse victims. The principal objective of this project is to secure facility space and hire a program coordinator to operate an accredited, safe, child-friendly facility to conduct forensic interviews. The facility will also provide victim advocacy services to foster healing for victims and their family members. The success of the project will be evaluated by the number of Allegany County children served at the center, compared to the number at the center located in neighboring Cattaraugus County. STHCS was established in 1994 and serves communities in Allegany, Cattaraugus, and Chautauqua counties. It is one of 35 rural health networks in New York State and one of only five recognized by the Office of Rural Health for its excellence.