SCAN was founded in 1988 by citizens committed to preventing child abuse and neglect locally and their tragic implications for children, families, and communities.
SCAN’s mission is to promote the well-being of children, improve parent-child relations, and prevent child abuse and neglect by: EDUCATING the community about the scope, nature, and consequences of child abuse and neglect and the importance of positive, nurturing parenting; PROVIDING direct parent education to parents and caregivers to expand their parenting knowledge and skills; and ADVOCATING for children in the community, the legislature, and the courts.
SCAN accomplishes its mission through three core programs:
Parent Education, Public Education, and Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA)
Here’s a snapshot of SCAN’s programs in action.
- SCAN’s Parent Education program inspires real change in parents and families.
- This fall, SCAN’s Parent Education Program implemented Strengthening Families, a curriculum designed specifically for parents and their middle-school-aged children. Parents began the program with sometimes strained relationships with their pre-teens. Over the course of the program, participants not only reported that they were better able to understand their adolescents and that their relationships had improved, they also expressed that they no longer felt so isolated, sharing “I learned that many parents are going through the same thing I am,” and “my family is not so different from others with challenges of teen behaviors.” A core group of parents even planned to continue to keep in touch and meet regularly after the classes ended.
- SCAN’s Public Education program connects families to resources about nurturing parenting so we remember parenting can be tough.
- SCAN recently provided a low-income mother a portable crib through Operation Safe Babies. The woman was expecting her third child, and all her children would be under three years old. Her second child recently turned one, and she was still sleeping in her crib. The mom was extremely grateful to have a portable crib for the new baby due the next week.
- SCAN’s CASA program is working to provide an individualized voice for child victims.
- SCAN’s CASA Program recruited, screened, and trained 11 new volunteers who completed SCAN’s 35-hour preservice training in the fall of 2016 utilizing their SCAN-generated training manuals. These new child advocates joined 64 active CASA volunteers in serving the best interests of children appointed to the program by the Alexandria and Arlington juvenile courts. This new cohort of volunteers offer a well-balanced diversity of racial, ethnic and cultural backgrounds which will help build SCAN’s capacity to give voice to the needs and priorities of the diverse children served as their cases progress through the court systems. The Program looks forward to training a new group of volunteers late spring 2017 to meet the growing demand for CASAs by the Alexandria and Arlington juvenile judges.
SCAN's vision is that every child in Northern Virginia will grow up in a safe, stable, nurturing family, with the supports they need to contribute to stronger communities today and as adults tomorrow.