If You Suspect Abuse – How to Report
Child Abuse

Call 911 immediately if the child is in danger.

  • DO make sure the child remains in a safe environment
  • DO listen to the child
  • DO NOT try to investigate
  • DO NOT confront the abuser
  • DO make a report

Please use the following as a guideline. Each child is unique, and so is the process that is taken to protect them.

If you want to contact Carousel Child Advocacy Center with questions or concerns, please call 910-254-9898 and ask for a Family Advocate.

Call 911 to speak with a police dispatcher


Call Your County’s Department of Social Services  – Links and phone numbers are below in the RESOURCES Section for Brunswick, New Hanover, and Pender County’s Department of Social Services (DSS).

Suicide Crisis Help Line – Call 988

Suicide Hotline Call 988
Linea de prevencion del suicidio y crisis

Mandatory Reporting

Please be aware that according to North Carolina MANDATED REPORTING LAWS any North Carolina adult that suspects that a child is being abused, neglected or mistreated, is required to report their suspicion to their local Department of Social Services.  These reports can be made anonymously. To review the mandated reporting laws please visit:

What to Expect

Please use this as a guideline.  Every situation is unique and will be treated as the professionals involved deem it necessary in the best interest of the child.

Before you call:

When making a report of suspected abuse, be prepared to provide the following information:

  • Child’s name, date of birth, and address
  • Brief description of the child
  • Any of the following if relevant: current injuries, medical problems, or behavioral problems
  • Reason for suspicion

After you call:

Law enforcement and/or the county’s Department of Social Services will coordinate and determine the best protection plan for the victim and under what time frame.  DSS and/or the police investigator may visit the home to interview household members to gather further information.

If deemed appropriate to proceed with an interview and medical exam at Carousel Child Advocacy Center, find out more information and what to expect about preparing the child for a visit and the process HERE in What We DO.

If you want to discuss the reporting process with Carousel Child Advocacy Center call 910-254-9898 and ask for a Family Advocate.

Carousel Child Advocacy Center, as a member of an MDT (Multi-Disciplinary Team) consisting of community partners, will make every effort to hold child abuse perpetrators accountable by collecting evidence from children who have reportedly experienced sexual/physical abuse and/or maltreatment an initial child medical evaluations and forensic interview.

Referrals are made through law enforcement and the county’s Departments of Social Services.  If you have concerns about a child in your community, please feel free to contact Carousel Child Advocacy Center at 910-254-9898 for guidance – ask for a Family Advocate.

Partnering With The Community to Prevent Child Abuse

Learn more about our Partner in Prevention Program
Tri-County CSAP 12.1.23


New Hanover County Social Services

New Hanover County
Department of Social Services
New Hanover County Social Services Web Site

Brunswick County Social Services

Brunswick County
Department of Social Services
Brunswick County Social Services Web Site

Pender County Social Services

Pender County
Department of Social Services
Pender County Social Services Web Site