Walkers laced up to benefit Carrie Lynn Children's Center, The Medical Evaluation Response Initiative Team (MERIT), and the Children's Advocacy Centers of Illinois (CACI) on Saturday, May 14, at Klehm Arboretum in Rockford, Illinois. Over $22,000 was raised thanks to sponsorships from Mark and Nancy Kotnour, Rockford Health System, Kohls Cares, Frito Lay, Meads Meats, Sargento Cheese and Coca Cola; pledges from numerous walkers; and a matching donation from the Thomas V. Giddens Junior Foundation.
As the Children's Advocacy Center serving Boone and Winnebago Counties, the mission of the Carrie Lynn Children's Center is to provide a comprehensive multi-disciplinary response to child sexual abuse and serious physical abuse allegations in a neutral, child-focused setting. Covering the counties in Northwest Illinois, MERIT, a program of the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Rockford, provides specialized medical exams to alleged victims of child sexual abuse and severe physical abuse. Established in 1995, CACI is the network that coordinates and provides a comprehensive response to child abuse in Illinois.