Taking children from the depths of fear and enriching their lives

The Means Report

Our focus is being placed on child abuse – how to spot it, what to do about it, and you’re gonna meet one person who’s the face of an organization that is constantly working to address it, and to help the smallest victims get on the path to healing and health. And she’s brand new at her position, but the furthest thing from brand new at the work that she and her team are doing. So I want you to stay tuned for that so that we can all work together to give kids a better life.

Brad Means: We’re gonna kick it off with Kari Viola-Brooke, Kari is the brand new Executive Director of Child Enrichment in the CSRA, and Kari, congratulations on your job, thanks for being here.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Thank you, thanks for havin’ me.

Brad Means: 16 years you’ve served Child Enrichment, and those sweet children who come to your door, so this really wasn’t that much of a transition to be the boss, was it?

Kari Viola-Brooke: No, not too much.

Brad Means: Yeah, how’s it goin’ so far?

Kari Viola-Brooke: It’s good, Dan Hillman had just retired, so it’s big shoes to fill, but I learned a lot from him while I was working under him.

Brad Means: Yeah, Dan did a wonderful job, and he was no stranger to The Means Report, sat in Kari’s chair many times, and we certainly wish him the best in his well-deserved retirement. Why did you decide to get into this line of work? It seems, I can’t think of something more challenging or something, for at least a good part of it, sadder than what you do.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, and it’s kinda funny the way I got into it, I’m not from Georgia, so I moved here for a completely different purpose, and I went to grad school, and I interned at the Child Advocacy Center at Child Enrichment. And that still was not my career path that I had envisioned myself going on, and then when I finished my internship, I just couldn’t see myself being anywhere else. The work we did was so meaningful to all the kids that we served, that when a position was open, I just knew that that’s where I needed to stay, and I’ve been there ever since.

Brad Means: The work you do, meaning taking a child from his or her darkest place, and putting them out somewhere better?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Exactly, my theory on it is we can’t change what happened to the kids before they step in our door, but we can change kinda what happens when they leave.

Brad Means: How could we picture the role of people at Child Enrichment, are you sort of a go-between between the abused child and the court system?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, so we have two programs, so we have the Child Advocacy Center, and then we also have the CASA program, the Court Appointed Special Advocates. So each of those programs are a little bit different. When we’re talking about the Child, the Court Appointed Special Advocates, the CASAs, they definitely are the in-between between the child and the court system. So what the do is, our CASAs train community volunteers to be court appointed advocates, just that. They get training, and then they work on the best interest of the child, so they’ll meet with the child, they will find out how the child’s doing, what resources they need, if they need a medical, if they need counseling, if their visits are going well. And then what that volunteer does is they will write a report, and they give it to the judge, and the judge uses that report when making a decision on what’s gonna happen next with that child’s placement.

Brad Means: What is child abuse, spanking them, giving them a whipping with a belt, what’s child abuse?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So, great question, it varies, there’s all different types of child abuse, so we have child sexual abuse, we have physical abuse, neglect, we also hear a lot of, now, of commercially sexually exploited children, things like that, so those are the main types of abuse we see at Child Enrichment.

Brad Means: Who abuses their kids, what’s the typical abuser look like?

Kari Viola-Brooke: That is a great question that you asked because I remember being in school, learning about the creepy man in the van, and stranger danger, things like that, and we should still teach kids about stranger danger, but that is not the majority of things that we’re seeing at Child Enrichment. We are not seeing kids getting abused by that creepy person in the van hanging outside of parks. It is somebody that the child knows, it’s sometimes a family member, somebody close to the child and to the family.

Brad Means: Why do people abuse children?

Kari Viola-Brooke: If we knew that answer, I think that, hopefully, we would all be out of business.

Brad Means: Yeah, it’s tough, but I mean, it has to come from someplace, do you find a common thread that runs through most of the abusers that come your way?

Kari Viola-Brooke: It really varies, and that’s what I really want society to realize, is that there isn’t a typical spokesperson-type look of somebody who abuses children. It can be male, it can be female, it can be all different ethnicities, all different ages, all different socioeconomic backgrounds, there isn’t a specific type of person that abuses children, which really makes it important that we stay aware of that, so that as adults, we’re aware to make sure we’re protecting children.

Brad Means: Is there a gender that’s abused more?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So, not really, when we’re looking at Child Enrichment stats, it’s pretty even in the CASA side, so the Court Appointed Special Advocates, so kids that have come into foster care, that CASAs are appointed to. On the Child Advocacy Center side, it’s a little bit higher females being abused, especially looking at sexual abuse, but that is not to eliminate the fact that boys are sexually abused, physically abused as well.

Brad Means: And is there a part of town, or a part of the two state where it happens more often?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Not really, and I think sometimes people have that misconception that, oh, it’s just in that neck of the woods, or just in this bad area that abuse is happening, it’s not, it happens everywhere.

Brad Means: And y’all serve the entire Central Savannah River Area.

Kari Viola-Brooke: So our CASA program serves the Augusta Judicial Circuit, which is Richmond County, Columbia County, and Burke County.

Brad Means: Burke County, yeah.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Our Child Advocacy Center, historically, has just served the Augusta Judicial Circuit, so those same three counties, but starting in December, we opened up an office in Thomson, and we serve the Toombs Judicial Circuit. So that’s McDuffie, Lincoln, Glascock, Warren, Taliaferro, and Wilkes County.

Brad Means: How’s it goin’ over there, are y’all stayin’ busy?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, it’s going really well, they never had a CAC before Child Enrichment opened one there, so the numbers, we were seeing some, but once we kind of got into that community, our numbers had increased a lot.

Brad Means: How does it work, who can take a child to the CAC, the Child Advocacy Center, for safety, and how do they do it?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So with the Child Advocacy Center, our referrals come from law enforcement or DFCS, or a judge.

Brad Means: They’ll go to a house, they’ll spot it, they call ya.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Exactly, so, or somebody makes a report, a teacher makes a report, a mandated reporter calls in to the reporting line, DFCS opens a case, or somebody goes to the police station and makes a report, DFCS or law enforcement open a case, and then they call the Child Advocacy Center. We’re written into the child abuse protocols for both Circuits, as the place where children have to get interviewed. So instead of them goin’ to law enforcement or DFCS and getting talked to at a police station or something like that, they come to our center, which is child-friendly, a neutral environment, and one of our trained forensic interviewers meets with them, the interview is recorded, and law enforcement and DFCS are in another room watching. So that hopefully, the purpose is, we’re eliminating the number of times children have to talk about the abuse.

Brad Means: What’s your goal when you get ’em in your door, to make them stop hurting or to get somethin’ on tape to bust the abuser?

Kari Viola-Brooke: It’s really to make them stop hurting, we’re not part of law enforcement and DFCS, so we don’t really have a, like a purpose in that. Our goal is really to be child first, we follow what’s called the Child First Doctrine, the child comes first before anything else; before the needs of law enforcement, before the needs of DFCS, before the needs of the parent, we really make sure we’re not pushing that child to make them more uncomfortable or more trauma to them, we wanna make sure we have really trauma-informed care, that’s a big kinda word gettin’ talked about. We don’t wanna cause anymore damage, or impact these children in a negative way, because they’ve already been through so much before they walk in our door, we wanna just make it as painless as possible for them.

Brad Means: What are some of the symptoms of child abuse, what can people like us, what can teachers look for?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, so teachers, I’m glad you brought that up, they are so vital to the protection of children. They are the first line of defense, they are the ones that see these kids all the time. So some of the things we wanna look for is, drastic changes in children’s behavior. If all of a sudden, a child is extremely withdrawn, they’re not talking in class, really just a big mood change. We also wanna look for, if there’s concerns of, all of a sudden, with young kids, they used to love when Dad would come and pick them up, and now, all of a sudden, they don’t want Dad to pick them up, there’s a big change in that behavior, that should be a red flag, maybe, what happened, how come they don’t wanna do that? When we’re talkin’ about physical abuse, we wanna see if the child’s in pain, if they’re having difficulty walking or sitting, bruises, unexplained bruises or marks, if the child’s not able to say how they got that black eye. We wanna know, that’s a concern, what happened there.

Brad Means: What do you think about, and this is sort of what I mentioned off the top, people who spank their children?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So we live in Georgia, and corporal punishment is legal, but there’s a lot of research out there that the negative effects that that can have later on in life, especially too, spanking children when they’re extremely older, there’s not a lot of benefit to that, so we should really be looking at other forms of discipline to kind of work on that behavior changes. As opposed to corporal punishment.

Brad Means: Well, I wanna find out what happens to the children, you’ve touched on it already, but really once they get into the system, and how you can help usher them through it to make sure they come out on the other side better. And we’re gonna do that as our coverage of the Child Enrichment Center and the good work that they do continues right here on News Channel 6, you’re watching The Means Report.

Our focus is being placed on child abuse – how to spot it, what to do about it, and you’re gonna meet one person who’s the face of an organization that is constantly working to address it, and to help the smallest victims get on the path to healing and health. And she’s brand new at her position, but the furthest thing from brand new at the work that she and her team are doing. So I want you to stay tuned for that so that we can all work together to give kids a better life.

Brad Means: We’re gonna kick it off with Kari Viola-Brooke, Kari is the brand new Executive Director of Child Enrichment in the CSRA, and Kari, congratulations on your job, thanks for being here.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Thank you, thanks for havin’ me.

Brad Means: 16 years you’ve served Child Enrichment, and those sweet children who come to your door, so this really wasn’t that much of a transition to be the boss, was it?

Kari Viola-Brooke: No, not too much.

Brad Means: Yeah, how’s it goin’ so far?

Kari Viola-Brooke: It’s good, Dan Hillman had just retired, so it’s big shoes to fill, but I learned a lot from him while I was working under him.

Brad Means: Yeah, Dan did a wonderful job, and he was no stranger to The Means Report, sat in Kari’s chair many times, and we certainly wish him the best in his well-deserved retirement. Why did you decide to get into this line of work? It seems, I can’t think of something more challenging or something, for at least a good part of it, sadder than what you do.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, and it’s kinda funny the way I got into it, I’m not from Georgia, so I moved here for a completely different purpose, and I went to grad school, and I interned at the Child Advocacy Center at Child Enrichment. And that still was not my career path that I had envisioned myself going on, and then when I finished my internship, I just couldn’t see myself being anywhere else. The work we did was so meaningful to all the kids that we served, that when a position was open, I just knew that that’s where I needed to stay, and I’ve been there ever since.

Brad Means: The work you do, meaning taking a child from his or her darkest place, and putting them out somewhere better?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Exactly, my theory on it is we can’t change what happened to the kids before they step in our door, but we can change kinda what happens when they leave.

Brad Means: How could we picture the role of people at Child Enrichment, are you sort of a go-between between the abused child and the court system?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, so we have two programs, so we have the Child Advocacy Center, and then we also have the CASA program, the Court Appointed Special Advocates. So each of those programs are a little bit different. When we’re talking about the Child, the Court Appointed Special Advocates, the CASAs, they definitely are the in-between between the child and the court system. So what the do is, our CASAs train community volunteers to be court appointed advocates, just that. They get training, and then they work on the best interest of the child, so they’ll meet with the child, they will find out how the child’s doing, what resources they need, if they need a medical, if they need counseling, if their visits are going well. And then what that volunteer does is they will write a report, and they give it to the judge, and the judge uses that report when making a decision on what’s gonna happen next with that child’s placement.

Brad Means: What is child abuse, spanking them, giving them a whipping with a belt, what’s child abuse?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So, great question, it varies, there’s all different types of child abuse, so we have child sexual abuse, we have physical abuse, neglect, we also hear a lot of, now, of commercially sexually exploited children, things like that, so those are the main types of abuse we see at Child Enrichment.

Brad Means: Who abuses their kids, what’s the typical abuser look like?

Kari Viola-Brooke: That is a great question that you asked because I remember being in school, learning about the creepy man in the van, and stranger danger, things like that, and we should still teach kids about stranger danger, but that is not the majority of things that we’re seeing at Child Enrichment. We are not seeing kids getting abused by that creepy person in the van hanging outside of parks. It is somebody that the child knows, it’s sometimes a family member, somebody close to the child and to the family.

Brad Means: Why do people abuse children?

Kari Viola-Brooke: If we knew that answer, I think that, hopefully, we would all be out of business.

Brad Means: Yeah, it’s tough, but I mean, it has to come from someplace, do you find a common thread that runs through most of the abusers that come your way?

Kari Viola-Brooke: It really varies, and that’s what I really want society to realize, is that there isn’t a typical spokesperson-type look of somebody who abuses children. It can be male, it can be female, it can be all different ethnicities, all different ages, all different socioeconomic backgrounds, there isn’t a specific type of person that abuses children, which really makes it important that we stay aware of that, so that as adults, we’re aware to make sure we’re protecting children.

Brad Means: Is there a gender that’s abused more?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So, not really, when we’re looking at Child Enrichment stats, it’s pretty even in the CASA side, so the Court Appointed Special Advocates, so kids that have come into foster care, that CASAs are appointed to. On the Child Advocacy Center side, it’s a little bit higher females being abused, especially looking at sexual abuse, but that is not to eliminate the fact that boys are sexually abused, physically abused as well.

Brad Means: And is there a part of town, or a part of the two state where it happens more often?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Not really, and I think sometimes people have that misconception that, oh, it’s just in that neck of the woods, or just in this bad area that abuse is happening, it’s not, it happens everywhere.

Brad Means: And y’all serve the entire Central Savannah River Area.

Kari Viola-Brooke: So our CASA program serves the Augusta Judicial Circuit, which is Richmond County, Columbia County, and Burke County.

Brad Means: Burke County, yeah.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Our Child Advocacy Center, historically, has just served the Augusta Judicial Circuit, so those same three counties, but starting in December, we opened up an office in Thomson, and we serve the Toombs Judicial Circuit. So that’s McDuffie, Lincoln, Glascock, Warren, Taliaferro, and Wilkes County.

Brad Means: How’s it goin’ over there, are y’all stayin’ busy?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, it’s going really well, they never had a CAC before Child Enrichment opened one there, so the numbers, we were seeing some, but once we kind of got into that community, our numbers had increased a lot.

Brad Means: How does it work, who can take a child to the CAC, the Child Advocacy Center, for safety, and how do they do it?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So with the Child Advocacy Center, our referrals come from law enforcement or DFCS, or a judge.

Brad Means: They’ll go to a house, they’ll spot it, they call ya.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Exactly, so, or somebody makes a report, a teacher makes a report, a mandated reporter calls in to the reporting line, DFCS opens a case, or somebody goes to the police station and makes a report, DFCS or law enforcement open a case, and then they call the Child Advocacy Center. We’re written into the child abuse protocols for both Circuits, as the place where children have to get interviewed. So instead of them goin’ to law enforcement or DFCS and getting talked to at a police station or something like that, they come to our center, which is child-friendly, a neutral environment, and one of our trained forensic interviewers meets with them, the interview is recorded, and law enforcement and DFCS are in another room watching. So that hopefully, the purpose is, we’re eliminating the number of times children have to talk about the abuse.

Brad Means: What’s your goal when you get ’em in your door, to make them stop hurting or to get somethin’ on tape to bust the abuser?

Kari Viola-Brooke: It’s really to make them stop hurting, we’re not part of law enforcement and DFCS, so we don’t really have a, like a purpose in that. Our goal is really to be child first, we follow what’s called the Child First Doctrine, the child comes first before anything else; before the needs of law enforcement, before the needs of DFCS, before the needs of the parent, we really make sure we’re not pushing that child to make them more uncomfortable or more trauma to them, we wanna make sure we have really trauma-informed care, that’s a big kinda word gettin’ talked about. We don’t wanna cause anymore damage, or impact these children in a negative way, because they’ve already been through so much before they walk in our door, we wanna just make it as painless as possible for them.

Brad Means: What are some of the symptoms of child abuse, what can people like us, what can teachers look for?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, so teachers, I’m glad you brought that up, they are so vital to the protection of children. They are the first line of defense, they are the ones that see these kids all the time. So some of the things we wanna look for is, drastic changes in children’s behavior. If all of a sudden, a child is extremely withdrawn, they’re not talking in class, really just a big mood change. We also wanna look for, if there’s concerns of, all of a sudden, with young kids, they used to love when Dad would come and pick them up, and now, all of a sudden, they don’t want Dad to pick them up, there’s a big change in that behavior, that should be a red flag, maybe, what happened, how come they don’t wanna do that? When we’re talkin’ about physical abuse, we wanna see if the child’s in pain, if they’re having difficulty walking or sitting, bruises, unexplained bruises or marks, if the child’s not able to say how they got that black eye. We wanna know, that’s a concern, what happened there.

Brad Means: What do you think about, and this is sort of what I mentioned off the top, people who spank their children?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So we live in Georgia, and corporal punishment is legal, but there’s a lot of research out there that the negative effects that that can have later on in life, especially too, spanking children when they’re extremely older, there’s not a lot of benefit to that, so we should really be looking at other forms of discipline to kind of work on that behavior changes. As opposed to corporal punishment.

Brad Means: Well, I wanna find out what happens to the children, you’ve touched on it already, but really once they get into the system, and how you can help usher them through it to make sure they come out on the other side better. And we’re gonna do that as our coverage of the Child Enrichment Center and the good work that they do continues right here on News Channel 6, you’re watching The Means Report.

Part 2

Brad Means: Welcome back to The Means Report, thanks for staying with us, Kari Viola-Brooke is our special guest today, she is the brand new Executive Director of Child Enrichment, Incorporated, they help our children when they are abused. And I wanna really kinda go behind the scenes, Kari, with what you do, you mentioned forensic interviews during the first segment, you have extensive experience in that area, what do you talk to the children about, and how do you get ’em to talk?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, so with a forensic interview, it’s not a fishing expedition, we’re not in there just trying to get things outta kids. So all of our interviewers are trained in a protocol, and what we do is, we really build rapport with kids, we really wanna make sure that they’re comfortable, they feel okay talking to us, and then we just open it up, we ask ’em if they know why they’re there to talk to us. A lot of times, kids do know why they’re there, so we’ll just start talking about it. If they don’t know, we may talk about if they’ve had any problems anywhere, talk about if they’ve had to go to the hospital or anything like that, and we’ll ask a lot of open-ended, non-leading, non-suggestive questions, and just provide a safe place for a child to give that statement where then if they do disclose, we’re gonna go in and delve a little deeper, and get some of those details about what happened.

Brad Means: Is there a parent or trusted loved one in the room, or is it just the child?

Kari Viola-Brooke: There is not somebody in the room with them, it’s just the child and the interviewer.

Brad Means: And how admissible, say if you had to give a percentage, is most of the stuff they say, do courts buy most of the stuff a child says in a forensic interview?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yes, they do, like I say all the time when I testify in court, everybody lies, but kids are not sophisticated liars, sofor the most part, we hear people sometimes say, oh, teenagers lie, or they’re just makin’ this up, that is not my experience, and I’ve interviewed over 1,200 children, most of the time, kids are not lying about the stuff that they’re in the interview talking about.

Brad Means: So once you get the facts from the kids, and you document that so that the legal proceedings can go forward, so that CASA can do its work, where does the child go?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So it depends on the situation, if they’re in a placement or if their parents are being supportive, then they’ll go back home. We will follow up with them, our Family Advocates will make sure that they have all the resources they need, will make sure that they have medical if that’s what they need, a medical exam, and then we refer them for counseling at the CAC, where we provide free trauma counseling. However, if they’re in a situation where maybe the parent isn’t being supportive, or protective, then they’ll be, they may be in foster care already before they come to the CAC, or they may go into foster care after that, and that’s where CASA is gonna get involved. A judge will appoint a CASA, and then that CASA is gonna work with that child and meet with them every month to make sure everything is happening to really work towards the ultimate goal of permanency.

Brad Means: What do you mean by permanency, making sure they’re never near that person again?

Kari Viola-Brooke: That’s not always what it means, it may be reunification, so maybe if that parent is working a case plan that DFCS set up, and they’re doing everything they can to get that child back, and it ends up being where the parent is appropriate, then the child will go back home. However, if that’s not the case, and the parent hasn’t worked their case plan, then they may get adopted, or guardianship may be transferred to maybe a other family member or something like that.

Brad Means: Can you help the abuser?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So at the Child Advocacy Center side, we don’t work with abusers, and really in CASA, sometimes, it depends on what the court’s view is right then, if they’re working for reunification, then sometimes CASA will work with the parent to make sure that the appropriate steps are taken, but for the most part, Child Enrichment’s purpose is to help people who’ve experienced abuse. So it’s not necessarily for helping abusers never to abuse a child again or anything like that, it’s really to provide services and support to child victims.

Brad Means: What if you wanna report child abuse, and get the help that y’all offer, because it sounds wonderful, and it’s needed, obviously, but you don’t want your name known, you wanna kinda lay low after you report it.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, so the great thing is, is that you can make anonymous reports. So you can call 1-855-GA-CHILD, that’s the reporting line number, and you can call and make a report, and you don’t, the person that you’re making a report on isn’t gonna know, oh, Brad called and he made another report on me or something like that, things like that don’t happen, the person, the family won’t know who made the report.

Brad Means: What about a fear that someone has that the child will be taken away from the family, where they say, look, I suspect something, but I don’t wanna rip that family apart.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, what I would say to that is, DFCS, Department of Family and Children Services, are gonna do their job in making sure that it is a safe place for the child, so the way I view that fear is, if a child is put into foster care, the system doesn’t do that willy-nilly, they’re not gonna just take kids and put ’em into foster care, it is for a reason why that happens. So then on the flip side of that, if a child is put into foster care, that report was a great thing that was made because obviously, that child needed assistance.

Brad Means: What’s the youngest abuse victim you’ve seen?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So on CASA’s side, it’s newborns, on the Child Advocacy Center side, we’re really working with children on a communication level, we don’t interview children under the age of three, just because we wanna be able to talk to them, but kids of all ages are abused too.

Brad Means: We do cover a lot of human trafficking stories here on Channel 6, are we making a dent in that? Because every time I’m on I-20, I wonder if someone’s being transported near me for that trade.

Kari Viola-Brooke: We are, I think we are just at the beginning of it, I think just like how we still are, where people don’t wanna think child abuse happens in our community, I think they really don’t wanna think commercially sexually exploited children are happening in our community, but I think we’re doing a great job of bringing more awareness, so I think with awareness comes the ability to provide more resources.

Brad Means: Speaking of, what do y’all need, besides a new building?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yes, that is the number one thing, we need a new building, our numbers have increased each year, and our building size has not, so our staff has increased, so we do need a new building, but besides that, we are a non-profit, so we’re not a government agency, all of our funding comes from grants we apply for, civic groups, private donations, special events, so financial means, so financial giving is always needed. We also need volunteers, I talked about CASA, we need people who are gonna be dedicated to helping provide a better life for these children. And doing that by giving them a voice.

Brad Means: What does a volunteer do, as far as when it comes to helping a child, I’m not gonna conduct forensic interviews if I sign up, but how do I chip in?

Kari Viola-Brooke: So what volunteers do is, they get assigned to a case, so they get assigned to a child that is in foster care, and they are that kid’s voice. They meet with them, they are their consistent person in their life, they may be changing foster homes, different placements, maybe different DFCS workers, so can we just imagine how terrifying that is for a kid, you come out of your home, where you don’t know where you’re going, and then you’re talking to different people all the time. But with a CASA, they have that one person, they have that person that is gonna be there with them from the beginning until that happy ending of permanency. So that CASA’s gonna meet with them at least once a month, and they’re gonna write that report. So CASAs, they’re gonna be involved, if you’re looking for something where you’re gonna have a hands-on, definite improvement in a child’s life, that’s exactly what you should volunteer to do.

Brad Means: I hope a lot of people will sign up and be that constant, familiar face, Kari. At the beginning of the interview, I mentioned that I can’t think of many lines of work that are sadder, and I mean that, because if you picture being in a forensic interview, hearing the answers and seeing what you see, it’s gut-wrenching. What makes you happy, what gives you joy in your job, and what’s that feel like?

Kari Viola-Brooke: Yeah, and it’s funny ’cause people say that all the time. It’s not a thing people wanna hear about, but it’s not that, it’s not as depressing as it seems, because we’re not the ones abusing these children, we’re the ones making sure that their life is gonna be better, so I actually view my job as really uplifting, because I hear really horrible things, but I can guarantee these kids are gonna have a better life after they walked into Child Enrichment’s door.

Brad Means: That’s 100% true, and I can’t thank you and your team at Child Enrichment enough for what you do.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Thank you.

Brad Means: Kari Viola-Brooke, congratulations on the new gig.

Kari Viola-Brooke: Thank you.

Brad Means: Running things over at Child Enrichment, and Child Enrichment, anybody watching, thank you so much for helping those sweet children. You can find out how to help more too, by going to their website, childenrichment.org, and there’s the address, if you wanna just write a check right now and mail it, it will get them closer to that new building, and you call them as well if you need help, or if you spot some of the warning signs that Kari outlined in the past 20 minutes or so. 706-737-4631, God bless Child Enrichment.

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Brad Means

The Means Report first aired in January of 2009 offering coverage that you cannot get from a daily newscast. Forget about quick soundbytes -- we deliver an in-depth perspective on the biggest stories. If they are making news on the local or national level, you will find them on the set of The Means Report. Hosted by WJBF NewsChannel 6 anchor, Brad Means, The Means Report covers the topics impacting your life, your town, your state, and your future.