People in the court

Carroll County victim advocate uses miniature courtroom to prepare abused children for trial

Group Pic of the dollhouse

Testifying in a courtroom is scary for anyone and particularly frightening for children and young adults who have been victims of sexual or physical abuse and must testify against the defendant, their abuser. 

Determined to assist these children, Springboard’s Victim Advocate in Carroll County’s Child Advocacy and Investigation Center (CCAIC), Alisa Donovan reached out to Imagination Dollhouses for Children, a non-profit that builds play scale replicas of courtrooms for use by Child Advocacy Centers and non-profits to prepare victims of abuse when testifying in court. 

“Play-scale brings a courtroom down to a child’s size and makes it less threatening,” said Alisa

The miniature replica of the courtroom was created within three weeks by craftsman and founder of Imagination Dollhouse for Children, Josef Soper. His work was based on photos taken by Alisa.  In late February 2022, the replica was delivered to the Child Advocacy Center in Westminster. 

 “This is an amazing tool that Lisa was able to access,” said Nicole Jackman, Springboard’s Interim Senior Director of Client Services, Therapist, and Director of Client Services for Springboard’s Carroll County office. “Playing with the model courtroom allows children to understand who is in the courtroom and where specific people including themselves will sit. This tool strengthens the Victim Advocate’s ability to serve children and is a valuable resource for all Springboard counselors and advocates.

 Interested in learning more about Imagination Dollhouse for Children, visit http://www.imaginationdollhouses.org/.

(Members of the Carroll County Child Advocacy and Investigative Center including (l-r) Springboard’s Victim Advocate, Lisa Donovan, Det. Kyle Merson, Det. Mike McMillion, Det. Jill Moore, Sgt. Carlos Bustos, Det. Courtney Brandt, Trp. Danielle Barry, Springboard therapist, Missy Cougnet, LCPC. Not pictured – Corp. Carson Fogerty, Det. Scott Morgan, Unit Coordinator, Denise Harmon)

Dollhouse
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FT Burden

Chief Executive Officer

F.T. was appointed Springboard Community Services as CEO in September of 2015 following a national search that yielded more than 200 candidates. Prior to joining SCS, he served for nearly 15 years as President & CEO of AIDS Interfaith Residential Services, Inc. / Empire Homes of Maryland. F.T.’s chief duties include leading fund and partnership development, cultivating the board of directors, and establishing the agency’s strategic direction and vision. A Florida native, F.T. enjoys cooking, traveling, and attending live music and dance performances.

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