The Dakota Children’s Advocacy Center (DCAC) started out as a task force to improve and create a coordinated response to child sexual abuse investigations. It opened in the spring of 1997 and became a full member of the National Children’s Alliance in 1998.

Since its opening, the DCAC has experienced tremendous growth. We have served all of the counties in North Dakota, including the state’s five Native American reservations, as well as northern South Dakota and Eastern Montana.

DCAC History

  • November 1996

    Task Force created in Bismarck to identify how to best serve sexually abused children.
  • February 1997

    Dakota Children's Advocacy Center established in Bismarck and first child served.
  • March 1997

    Sixteen Steps to a Legally Sound Interview Conference
  • 1998

    Dakota CAC becomes an Accredited Member of the National Children's Alliance.
  • November 2001

    Child Abuse: A Multidisciplinary Team Approach Conference
  • 2004

    Mental health services begin to be provided.
  • June 2005

    Case tracking database implemented.
  • 2006

  • 2006

    Trained and started offering Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.
  • 2007

    Staff become Certified Stewards of Children Trainers.
  • September 2007

    Savor the Flavor Fundraiser developed.
  • October 2007

    We move into our first contiguous space.
  • 2008

    First Lunch-and-Learn held.
  • January 2009

    Sexual Deviance in the New Millennium Conference
  • 2009

    Increased medical staff availability
  • April 2009

    Staff became Certified Happiest Baby on the Block facilitators.
  • 2009

    Maggie joins our staff as our first therapy dog.
  • 2010

    Emergency medical services begin to be offered.
  • December 2010

    Annual Giving Tree Campaign starts.
  • March 2011

    Sex Offenders: How They Think, What They Do Conference
  • January 2012

    Started disabilities taskforce.
  • 2012

  • April 2013

    Champions For Children Conference
  • April 2015

    Kids with Sexual Behavior Problems Conference
  • April 2015

    Trained and started offering Problem Sexual Behavior Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.
  • October 2016

    Trained and started offering Parent Child Interactive Therapy.
  • April 2017

    We were awarded the FBI's Directors Community Leadership Award.
  • November 2017

    We become an Independent 501c3 and separate from our umbrella organization.
  • November 2017

    We move to our new location on East Central Avenue, at the top of the hill in Bismarck.
  • 2020

    Dickinson, North Dakota, satellite location opens.
  • July 2021

    We expand to a new location on East Broadway Avenue in Bismarck.

The Dakota Children's Advocacy Center is an integral part of our team members’ ability to investigate and intervene in child abuse cases and to provide essential services needed to ensure Hope, Health, and Healing.