ChicagoCAC is housed in a 42,000-square-foot building located at 1240 South Damen Avenue.
Our facility was designed specifically for us, featuring bright colors and an abundance of natural light to help children and families feel safe and to represent best practices as a trauma-informed environment.
In addition to offering a comforting place for our clients, our center encourages collaboration among members of our co-located teams. The city’s first responders to reports of child sexual abuse are stationed at the center, which enhances information-sharing, making investigations more child-centered, effective and timely.
ChicagoCAC is one of the largest children’s advocacy centers in the country and one of only a few at which all partner agencies are co-located.
ChicagoCAC was founded by former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley in 1998. The city, county and state provided seed money and additional resources to build our center, which opened in 2001. Renowned Chicago architect Stanley Tigerman designed the original 24,000-square-foot facility specifically for ChicagoCAC, incorporating child-friendly elements in each aspect of the design. The interior and exterior of our building are brightly colored to mimic a playhouse or castle that a child might design. Windows within the building sit low so that children can see out and plenty of light can come in. The entire space was designed as a figure-8, so hallways continue without dead ends.
In January 2015, we completed construction of an 18,000-square-foot expansion to better support the families we serve. Designed by Chicago architects Holabird & Root, the new space was designed to incorporate the same child-friendly elements as the first building.
The additional space improved the quality and number of child- and family-friendly spaces, shaped the physical environment to enhance collaboration among our teams, doubled our mental health program capacity by adding dedicated space for new staff, and included a new community training center to broaden our prevention efforts.
We are occasionally able to offer tours of the center. If you are interested please send a request to firstname.lastname@example.org.