A community response that facilitates a compassionate, coordinated approach to the prevention, identification, prosecution and treatment of abuse involving children and youth.
Alisa’s Wish Child and Youth Advocacy Centre started with just that – a wish.
Jennifer Hyland, a Sergeant for the Ridge Meadows RCMP detachment, dreamed of a better way to help victims of abuse. During her time at the detachment, Jennifer worked with many child and youth victims of abuse cases. A five-year old boy sexually abused by a babysitter. A 15-year old girl raped by her boyfriend. A nine-year old girl physically abused by her stepmother.
Alisa was one of those children whose brave story touched Jennifer’s heart. Alisa’s family was like many in the Ridge Meadows community.
Not only did they have to endure the suffering of abuse, but also the emotional trauma that followed when accessing disconnected support services.
These families were left feeling lost, confused and helpless. Jennifer worked hard to support these families, but she also felt lost and helpless. Her wish was to make effective changes.
Alisa is one child abuse survivor who represents many child and youth victims of abuse. Alisa’s Wish is that all children and youth in our community receive the best services in the worst circumstances.
In 2010 The Department of Justice, Canada announced funding for Child Advocacy Centres across Canada.
In February 2011, Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows Community Services conducted a feasibility study with funding from the Department of Justice Canada. Consequently, the Ridge Meadows Pilot Project Task Force was struck. This study proved that a streamlined process could be built with our community’s service providers under one roof... called Alisa’s Wish Child and Youth Advocacy Centre.
In 2012, a grant was received from the Federal Government to fund a pilot Child and Youth Advocacy Centre operation. An additional grant was received from the Province of BC for coordination.
We were grateful to receive additional funding from the Federal Government for enhancement of the pilot project. This funding expires in March of 2016.