Prevent. Protect. Heal.
The mission of the Dee Norton Child Advocacy Center is to prevent abuse, protect children and heal families. Our community has a long history of advocating for children who are victims of abuse.
We have a long history of advocating for children who are victims of abuse.
In 1975, the Junior League of Charleston identified gaps in services available to child victims in the Lowcountry as well as a failure of community agencies to communicate and collaborate in the best interest of the children. The result was that many children were experiencing harm in the aftermath of abuse. In 1988, with encouragement from the Junior League, the Charleston County Legislative Delegation appointed a committee to study our community's response to child abuse. The committee identified the need for formal coordination of services to children at risk in our community and recommended establishing a center for this purpose.
With leadership from the Junior League, our state's first Children's Advocacy Center (CAC) was established in 1989 as the Lowcountry Children's Center, Inc. The CAC model provides a "one-stop-shop" to better serve victims of abuse and their families while also supporting the investigative process.
The Center opened its doors in March 1991 at 1061 King Street. In 2001, the Lowcountry Children's Center was renamed The Dee Norton Lowcountry Children's Center (DNLCC) in memory of one of its founders and long-time volunteers, Dee Norton. In 2017 the Center was renamed the Dee Norton Child Advocacy Center to better reflect the nature of the work we do for children in our community.
Changing the World, One Child at a Time.
Who is Dee Norton?
Dee Holmes Norton, co-founder of the Dee Norton Child Advocacy Center, lived her life in service of others.
Dee Holmes Norton, co-founder of the Dee Norton Child Advocacy Center, lived her life in service to others. A native of Charleston, Dee offered a powerful, tenacious voice for the children of her community and state. The core of her beliefs and the scope of her interest were reflected in her actions and vigor as a dedicated advocate for children and young people for over twenty years. She was also a teacher, tutor, mentor, and volunteer.
Appointed as the co-chair of the Junior League committee charged with researching the establishment of a coordinated response to child abuse in the Lowcountry, Dee, and her friend and co-chair Suzy Parsell Thompson, worked tirelessly to find the best solution for our community. Their efforts led to the opening of the Center as the first Children’s Advocacy Center in South Carolina and ultimately, to the nationally-recognized center it is today.
Dee continued to serve as an active member of the Board of Directors and volunteer until her death in August of 2001.
Much of Dee’s work was done behind the scenes, yet when necessary, she would stand firm and lend her voice in the service of children. Her beliefs and values continue to be part of the Center’s DNA today as we work together to change the world, one child at a time.