Please contact the Children’s Advocacy Center for more information or to schedule a program for your organization! Call (903) 957-0440.

Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse

This seminar teaches individuals who work with children on a daily basis, about the signs and symptoms of child abuse. Professionals will learn facts about child abuse, how to recognize physical and behavioral signs of the varying forms of child abuse, as well as many other important details including how to make a report. (1–1.5 hours)

Break the Silence

Jane Seymour hosts this program which reveals the realities of child abuse in a way appropriate for 3rd-5th grade viewers. Physical abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect are explained in terms that children can understand and identify with. Four young people speak candidly about their abuse and their abusers and describe how adults can use fear, manipulation, and neglect to hurt children. However, all of these stories have promising endings. With the help of social workers, therapists, and foster families, each of the victims was supported and is now leading a normal life.

P.S. It’s My Body!

This is an innovative, practical safety series designed to teach and reinforce the three R’s of personal safety: Recognizing, Resisting, and Reporting. This program is lead by a trained facilitator and Happy Bear and is appropriate for children from Pre-K through the 2nd grade.

Signs and Symptoms

The following are signs commonly associated with abuse, but they are not absolutes. This list is not a checklist but a guide to help us identify abuse when it is present.

Frequent injuries that are unexplained and/or when the child or parent cannot adequately explain their causes such as: bruises, cuts, black eyes, fractures, burns

  • Burns or bruises in an unusual pattern that may indicate the use of an instrument
  • Lack of reaction to pain
  • Injuries that appear after the child has not been seen for several days
  • Evidence of delayed or inappropriate treatment for injuries
  • Injuries involve the face, backs of hands, buttocks, genital area, abdomen, back, or
  • sides of the body
  • Frequent complaints of pain without obvious injury
  • Complaints of soreness or uncomfortable when moving
  • Aggressive, disruptive and destructive or self-destructive behavior
  • Passive, withdrawn, emotionless behavior
  • Fear of going home or seeing caregivers


  • Obvious malnourishment or inadequate nutrition
  • Lack of personal cleanliness
  • Torn and/or dirty clothes
  • Need for glasses, dental care or other unattended medical attention
  • Consistent hunger, stealing or begging for food
  • Distended stomach, emaciated
  • Lack of supervision for long periods of time
  • Frequent absence or tardiness from school
  • Regularly displays fatigue or listlessness or falls asleep in class
  • Reports that no caretaker is at home
  • Self-destructive behavior
  • Extreme loneliness and need for affection

Sexual Abuse

  • Torn, stained or bloody underclothing
  • Pain, swelling or itching in genital area
  • Difficulty walking or sitting
  • Excessive seductiveness, inappropriate sex play or premature understanding of sex
  • Role reversal, overly concerned for siblings
  • Significant weight change
  • Suicide attempts (especially adolescents)
  • Threatened by physical contact, closeness
  • Extreme fear of being alone with adults especially if of a particular gender
  • Sudden refusal to change for gym or to participate in physical activities
  • Sexual victimization of other children
  • Major change in normal mood or behavior

Emotional Abuse

  • Speech disorders
  • Delayed physical development
  • Substance abuse
  • Ulcers, asthma, severe allergies
  • Habit disorders (sucking, rocking, biting)
  • Antisocial, destructive behaviors
  • Delinquent behaviors (especially adolescents)
  • Developmentally delayed

Since its founding in 2004, the Grayson County Children’s Advocacy Center has provided prevention/community training to OVER 10,000 STUDENTS AND ADULTS and counseling services to over 1250 children.