photos c/o Kristina Bowman
The Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center’s (DCAC) 9th annual Appetite for Advocacy luncheon was held on April 26, 2016 at the Sheraton Hotel Dallas. Event emcee, Katy Blakey, NBC 5 anchor and reporter introduced TED talk phenomenon and keynote speaker Brené Brown who immediately captivated the audience with her humor and extraordinary relatability. Brené’s message on vulnerability, courage, worthiness, and shame reminded guests that each of them can shoulder their share of the burden of child abuse, big or small, so that one person doesn't have to bear it all. Event co-chairs Paula Richmond and Megan Steinbach welcomed the nearly 1,600 guests and painted a picture of the typical client served by the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center - a 9-year-old girl who has been sexually abused by someone she knows and trusts. “While her peers have been memorizing state capitals and discovering what vinegar does to baking soda, she has endured abuse more heinous than many of us would allow our minds to imagine.” Their story ended on a hopeful note, describing how the average DCAC client moves through therapy and “no longer lives as a victim of the abuse she’s suffered…instead she is a survivor, empowered to walk in freedom.” The event raised more than $325,000 for the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center’s mission to improve the lives of abused children and to provide national leadership on child abuse issues.
DCAC President and CEO, Lynn M. Davis, also delivered a poignant message stating, “Our kids are in trouble, they need us to be engaged and move from silent witnesses to protective adults. They need us to provide justice and restore hope. We must roll up our sleeves and figure out how to help. We must seek solutions, accountability and excellence. You, our donors and supporters, require that of us and I can promise you, we are up to the task.” Each year at the luncheon, DCAC recognizes those who have made a significant impact on the lives of abused children in the community. The Bill Walsh Award, named after former lieutenant and DCAC co-founder Bill Walsh, is given to a professional who has demonstrated significant commitment and dedication in the field of child abuse prevention, investigation, prosecution or healing. This year’s Bill Walsh Award was presented to Irish Burch, DCAC’s Chief of Coordination and Training. The Ruth Sharp Altshuler Award, named after philanthropist and community leader Ruth Altshuler, is also presented to an individual or organization that has demonstrated a commitment to the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center in fighting crimes against children through financial and volunteer support. This year’s Ruth Sharp Altshuler Award was presented to Capital for Kids. To learn more, visit http://www.dcac.org.