The Northwest Arkansas Economic Development District provided a $25,000 grant to the construction of the Southern Regional National Child Protection Training Center.
State Representative Donna Hutchinson handed over the check to help fund the new facility at Northwest Arkansas Community College.
The Southern National Child protection training center will be a state-of the art training facility.
“Training them to have the latest, greatest information on how to detect, investigate child abuse,” says Becky Paneitz, NWACC President.
It will serve a 16-state region and is one of four in the country.
The facility will feature a two-story mock home, mock court rooms, child forensic interview rooms and much more.
“We have a forensic nursing unit, so we can actually train nurses on how to detect child abuse so it's really hands on training for people who deal with child abuse," says Paneitz.
“We have a real problem in Arkansas. we have mandated reporting law if they suspect child abuse that includes case workers, doctors, police men, lawyers but they haven't been trained what to look for," says State Representative Donna Hutchinson.
She says people are afraid to report it but need to be educated so they can learn how to detect child abuse.
"After 6 years of working at this I understand how Penn state happened, good people didn't know what to do or they were afraid to the right thing.”
Thursday’s $25,000 grant from the Northwest Arkansas Economic Development District brings the total raised to build the center to almost $1 million dollars. To open their doors, they need $3 million.