When they met Monday, Leavenworth County commissioners approved $9,000 in emergency funding to help the First Judicial District CASA Association take over the operation of a child advocacy center.

When they met Monday, Leavenworth County commissioners approved $9,000 in emergency funding to help the First Judicial District CASA Association take over the operation of a child advocacy center.

The existing Leavenworth Child Advocacy Center currently is operated by the Alliance Against Family Violence. But that center will close at the end of the week, according to Kelly Meyer, executive director of the First Judicial District CASA Association.

CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocates.

The Child Advocacy Center conducts forensic interviews of children who are reported to be the victims of abuse.

Meyer said officials with a state child advocacy center association contacted CASA about opening a child advocacy center to replace the one that is closing in Leavenworth.

Meyer said the missions of CASA and the Leavenworth Child Advocacy Center are similar – to provide services for abused and neglected children.

Meyer said the existing Leavenworth Child Advocacy Center served more than 100 children last year.

“There is a huge need for this in our community,” she said.

The County Commission traditionally allocates funding to the First Judicial District CASA Association each year.

Meyer’s request was for additional funding to operate the new Child Advocacy Center through Nov. 30.

According to Meyer, grant funding from other sources can be acquired for December.

Meyer presented two options. One option was to open the new Child Advocacy Center on Oct. 15, which would result in $8,942 in expenses for October and November. The other option would be to open the new center Nov. 1, which would result in expenses of $5,927.

Commissioners voted to provide $9,000 in funding so the new center can be opened next month.

Commissioner Bob Holland said County Clerk Janet Klasinski has identified a source for the money among the county government’s funds.

The county government also traditionally provides funding to the Alliance Against Family Violence each year.

Holland suggested commissioners may want to look at the amount they budgeted for the Alliance for 2018 now that the organization will no longer be operating the Leavenworth Child Advocacy Center.

County Administrator Mark Loughry said this issue can be revisited later.

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