MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - It’s been a busy year so far for workers at the Children’s Recovery Center.
The group said it’s on par to see more children this year than previous years. In the first four months of 2019, the group already treated 150 children who suffered from physical or sexual abuse.
"We've never seen as many kids as we've seen recently,” said Executive Director Louise Carson. "We're ahead by 15 children this year than we saw last year at this time."
Carson explained the children are victims of sexual and physical abuse from Horry and Georgetown counties, 14% are from Myrtle Beach.
"In 2018 we saw 377 kids, in 2017 we saw 347 kids, the year before that we saw 303 kids, so it’s growing by about 20% each year,” said Carson. “I’m hoping we will see around 400 before the year is over and the good news about that is those are all the kids we are able to help.”
Carson said the average age of children they’re seeing for sexual assault is nine years old and many have sexually-transmitted infections.
"The stories are horrific that these kids have to tell and we want to help them. We want them to be able to grow into strong survivors with futures and they deserve that,” Carson said.
The non-profit works to address each child’s needs. After each exam, the child gets a stuffed animal and a blanket made by Carolina Comfort.
“My best advice on child abuse is if you see something say something. Even if you aren’t sure it’s better to report something and be wrong than for something to go unreported," Carson said.
The Children’s Recovery Center is one of 40 non-profits taking part in Palmetto Giving Day. For more on how you can donate to the organization click here.