About ChildFirst®

The ChildFirst® Forensic Interview Protocol brings the field into the classroom, enhancing the education of front-line child abuse professionals. This course is designed for investigative teams of law enforcement officers, social workers, prosecutors, child protection attorneys and forensic interviewers.

Students receive training on the ChildFirst® Forensic Interview Protocol which includes child development, memory and suggestibility, testifying in court, legal issues and preparing children for court. This training incorporates lecture and discussion, review of electronically recorded interviews, skill-building exercises and an interview practicum.

21 states, 839 counties and the countries of Japan and Colombia have or are in the process of developing a five-day course modeled after the ChildFirst® program. More than 6,500 professionals are trained annually at a state or national course.

Testimonials

FOR PROFESSIONALS

ChildFirst®: The Course

ChildFirst® is a unique approach to forensic interviewing for several reasons. The course was designed by and for the front-line child abuse professional. Courses teach students to apply the latest research to real-world situations. Students watch numerous videotaped child sexual abuse interviews as a means of bringing the course material to life.

The program requires students to demonstrate their interviewing skills. ChildFirst® models the multidisciplinary approach.The program encourages ongoing critiques of students’ interviewing skills in order to improve their technique. The ChildFirst® forensic interview course has been approved by the National Children’s Alliance to meet accreditation standards.

EXPANDED TRAINING

ChildFirst® EX: Expanded Forensic Interview Process

We now know that one single comprehensive forensic interview does not meet the needs for all children. Based on the nationally-recognized ChildFirst® Forensic Interview Protocol, this training provides a defensible process for conducting interviews with children who may not succeed in a standard, single interview due to trauma, developmental, special needs or other complicating issues, including polyvictimization.

This training will discuss the expanded interview process as well as research supporting multiple, non-duplicative interviews with child victims and witnesses. ChildFirst® EX can be utilized with any forensic interview protocol model and includes not only lecture but practice for participants in conducting an expanded forensic interview.

FOR PROFESSIONALS

ChildFirst®: National Course

Finding words can be difficult for a child victimized by abuse. Conflicting emotions of fear and love for the perpetrator may cause a child to be reluctant to reveal abuse. If a child tries to speak of abuse, he or she may lack the verbal skills to adequately communicate the event to an adult.

Finding words can be difficult for a police officer, social worker or prosecutor who must speak to a child about abuse. In order to communicate competently with a child, the interviewer must be able to speak in a manner consistent with the child’s linguistic and developmental abilities.

Finding words can be difficult for a child forced to tell a jury about abuse.

Finding words can be difficult for an investigator or prosecutor forced to defend an interview from an attack by defense counsel that the child was “led” into making a false accusation.

ChildFirst® Instructors

Forensic Interview Specialist and Trainer
Lead Forensic Interview Specialist
Senior Director
Chief Program Officer, Education & Research

ChildFirst® States & Countries

Upcoming Trainings:

April 24 – April 28 – Anchorage, AK

September 25 – September 29 – Anchorage, AK

Year Certified:

2014

Contact:

Mari Mukai
Chapter Coordinator
Alaska Children’s Alliance

P.O. Box 672069
Chugiak AK 99567

P: 907-688-0163
E: [email protected]

 

2024 Trainings:

Coming soon!

Contacts:

Elizabeth Pulley
Executive Director
Children’s Advocacy Centers of Arkansas

P: 501-615-8633
E: [email protected]

Erin Kraner
Director of Operations
Children’s Advocacy Centers of Benton County

P: 479-621-0385 Ext:103
E: [email protected]

2024 Trainings:

Coming soon!

Year Certified:

2007

Contacts:

Kristen Clark
Coordinator
Governor’s Task Force on Justice for Abused Children, The Village for Families & Children, Inc.

P: 860-297-0549
E: [email protected]

Michelle Manning
Assistant State’s Attorney
Division of Criminal Justice-Stamford
123 Hoyt Street
Stamford, CT 06904

P: 203-965-5215
E: [email protected]

Krystal Rich
Director
Connecticut Children’s Alliance

E: [email protected]

2024 Trainings:

ChildFirst Training | February 26-March 1, 2024

Year Certified:

TBD

Contact:

Diane Klecan

Director for Client Services, Children’s Advocacy Center of Delaware, Inc.

611 S. Dupont Highway, Suite 201

Dover, DE 19901

P: 302-741-2123 Ext. 104

E: [email protected]

Rosalie Morales

Chief Policy Advisor CAN Panel Director, Office of the Child Advocate

900 King St. Suite 350

Wilmington, DE 19801

P: 302-255-1730

E: [email protected]

2024 Trainings:

https://access.gpstc.org/student/classes/details?gpstcCode=MC1397

Year Certified:

2003

Contact:

Amy F. Economopoulos
Executive Director
Anna Crawford Children’s Center

E: [email protected]

 

2024 Trainings:

https://childrensadvocacycentersofillinois.org/training

Year Certified:

2003

Contact:

Ya’Shika Reed

Training and Prevention Specialist
CAC’s of Illinois

904B West 3rd Street
Springfield IL 62701

P: 217-528-2224
E: [email protected]

 

2024 Trainings:

https://incacs.org/organizer/childfirst-indiana/

February 26 – March 1

July 15 – July 19

September 23 – September 27

Year Certified:

2002

Contact:

Denise Valdez
Executive Director, Kids Talk Child Advocacy Center

814 Central Avenue, Anderson, IN 46012

P: 217-402-2231
E: [email protected]

 

Jan Lutz
Executive Director, IN Chapter of National Children’s Alliance

P: 248-762-5520
E: [email protected]

2024 Trainings:

https://www.wkcac.com/childfirst

Year Certified:

2005

Contact:

Kelly Robbins
Executive Director
Kansas ChildFirst

103 E. 9th
Scott City, KS 67871

Learn more about Kansas Chapter of Children’s Advocacy Centers.

2024 Trainings:

ChildFirst Training | March 11-15, 2024

ChildFirst Training | May 20-24, 2024

Year Certified:

2004

Contact:

Wendy Myers
State Chapter Director
Maryland Children’s Alliance

P: 443-872-2116
E: [email protected]

Jamie Smith
Training Coordinator
Maryland Children’s Alliance

E: [email protected]

Learn more about the program.

2024 Trainings:

Coming soon!

Year Certified:

2015

Contact:

Tracie Clanaugh
Executive Director
First Witness Child Advocacy Center

4 W. 5th Street
Duluth MN 55806

P: 218-727-8353
E: [email protected]

Madeline Kvale
Operations Director
First Witness Child Advocacy Center

4 W. 5th Street
Duluth MN 55806

P: (218) 727-8353
E: [email protected]

 
 

2024 Trainings:

ChildFirst Training | Week of February 26

ChildFirst Training | Week of August 19

 

Year Certified:

2002

Contact:

Karla Steckler Tye
Executive Director
Children’s Advocacy Centers of Mississippi

Post Office Box 5348
Jackson MS 39296

Lisa Kwasinkski
Program Director
Children’s Advocacy Centers of Mississppi

P: 601-940-6183 Ext:1003
E: [email protected]

 

2024 Trainings:

Coming soon!

Year Certified:

2003

Contact:

Amy Robins
Director of Forensic Services
The Child Advocacy Center of Northeast Missouri

989 Heritage Parkway
Wentzville MO 63385

P: 636-332-0545 Ext:131
E: [email protected]

Meg Boyko
Manager of Training and Education
Missouri KidsFirst

P: 573-632-4600
E: [email protected]

2024 Trainings:

https://www.findingwordsnj.org/forensic-interview-training

Year Certified:

2002

Contact:

Peter J. Boser
Director
Finding Words/ChildFirst New Jersey

Director, Member Services New Jersey Children’s Alliance

129 Washington Street, Second Floor Morristown NJ, 07960

P: 732-379-7509
E: [email protected]

Sara Miao
Training Coordinator
Finding Words/Child First New Jersey

129 Washington Street, Second Floor Morristown NJ, 07960

P: 973-539-FWNJ (3965)
E: [email protected]

2024 Trainings:

 

Coming soon!

 

Year Certified:

2012

Contact:

Mary McCoy
Child Advocacy Center of Fayetteville

P: 910-578-3903
E: [email protected]

 

2024 Trainings:

https://www.ohioattorneygeneral.gov/Individuals-and-Families/Victims/Trainings-for-Victim-Service-Providers/Finding-Words-Ohio-Registration

Year Certified:

2006

Contact:

Holly Zachariah
OH Attorney General’s Office

30 E. Broad St., 26th Floor
Columbus OH 43215

P: 614-216-4909
F: 866-531-8790
E: [email protected]

Learn more at the program’s website.

2024 Trainings:

https://oklahoma.gov/occy/departments/freestanding-multidisciplinary-teams/childfirst-oklahoma.html

Year Certified:

2006

Contact:

Maria Rosales-Lambert

Co-Founder/Program Director, OK Interviewing Services

E: [email protected]

Makala Pittman
Administrative Assistant II, Freestanding Multidisciplinary Teams, OCCY

P: 405-606-4903
E: [email protected]

Learn more about the ChildFirst® Oklahoma trainings.

2024 Trainings:

TBD

Year Certified:

2012

Contacts:

 

2024 Trainings:

ChildFirst SC | January 22-26, 2024

Year Certified:

2001

Contacts:

Margaret Fent Bodman
Senior Resource Attorney, ChildFirst Coordinator
Children’s Law Center, University of South Carolina – School of Law

1300 Pickens Street
Columbia SC 29208

P: 803-576-7326
E: [email protected]du

2024 Trainings:

Coming soon!

Year Certified:

2006

Contacts:

Maggie Cullinan
Executive Director
Children’s Advocacy Centers of VA

P: (540) 312-1991

E. [email protected]

Maggie Cullinan

Program Coordinator
Children’s Advocacy Centers of VA

P: (276) 644-3371
E: [email protected]

2024 Trainings:

Coming soon!

Year Certified:

2004

Contacts:

Phillip Morrison
West Virginia Prosecuting
Attorney’s Institute

90 MacCorkle Avenue SW, Suite 202
South Charleston WV 25303

P: 304-558-3348
E: [email protected]

Maureen Runyon
Women & Children’s Hospital CAC

800 Pennsylvania Avenue
Charleston WV 25302

P: 304-388-2391
F: 304-388-3484
E: [email protected]

Amy Leslie
Coordinator
West Virginia Prosecuting
Attorney’s Institute

90 MacCorkle Avenue SW, Suite 202
South Charleston WV 25303

P: 304-558-3348
E: [email protected]

2023 Trainings:

TBD

Year Certified:

2011

Contacts:

Oswaldo Posado
Oficina ICITAP
Bogota, Colombia

E: [email protected]

Fernando Cañon

E: [email protected]

 

2023 Trainings:

TBD

Year Certified:

2010

Contacts:

Fujiko Yamada
President
ChildFirst Japan

#B, 2nd Floor, Cherry Hills Kaneda, 1-5-31 Sukuradai, Isehara-shi,
Kanagawa-ken Japan 259-1132

P: +81-463-90-2715
F: +81-463-90-2716
E: [email protected]

Kumiko Kudo

E: [email protected]

Sakiko Kusumoto

E: [email protected]

2024 Trainings:

ChildFirst Nigeria | February 5-9, 2024

Year Certified:

TBD

Course Materials

The following links provide password protected access to the ChildFirst training materials.