Organized in 1980, the Irving Family Advocacy Center Inc. (FAC), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, originally was incorporated under the name Irving Youth/Family Counseling Services Inc.
In 2003, the City of Irving reported 6,379 crimes against persons, and 2,493 of those were classified family violence. As a result of the high volume of cases, the Irving Police Department (IPD) recognized that the victims of these violent crimes needed access to support services, and the concept of the Irving Family Advocacy Center was developed.
The IPD spent six years developing a comprehensive plan, as well as identifying and securing funding for the FAC. The citizens of Irving supported a 1999 bond issue that provided $2.5 million for the construction of the facility. Construction began in February 2001, and less than a year later, Irving officially opened the Family Advocacy Center facility in January 2002.
The facility provides 11,000 square feet of counseling and education space, including 17 counseling rooms – eight of which are audio/video recording rooms – and two spaces with one-way mirrors for play therapy observation and live supervision.
Other agencies now housed in the FAC facility are:
Irving Police Department’s Domestic Violence and Sex Crimes units
Dallas County Child Protective Services
FAC Victim’s Services and Counseling Services
Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center
These groups work together to ensure that the victims of crime are provided coordinated services in one location. This cooperative effort, plus an increased visibility in the community, has resulted in greater numbers of clients being referred to the agency for counseling, case management, education and support.