To Report Child Abuse

Nebraska: 1 (800) 652-1999
Iowa: 1 (800) 362-2178

To Contact Us

(402) 595-1326
Hours: Mon-Fri: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
After hours by appointment only

What to Expect

If you have just learned that your child or another child has been/may have been abused, you may have questions about what to do next. We're here to help.

If you suspect that a child has been abused or neglected, call:

Nebraska: 1-800-652-1999 (CPS Hotline) or local law enforcement
Iowa: 1-800-362-2178 (DHS Hotline) or local law enforcement

What to Expect When Reporting Child Abuse

What kind of questions will the Hotline ask me?

The Hotline will ask for the names and ages (dates of birth if available) of the children and caregivers in the home or involved in the situation, an address for the child/children you are concerned about and where the abuse/neglect is alleged to have occurred if not in the home; and who is believed to have harmed the child, if not the parent.

They will ask for what you know about the alleged abuse/neglect, including any injuries. If a child disclosed something to you, you should use the child’s words. They will also ask when the child will see or be with the alleged offender again. If they ask you something you don’t know, that’s ok.

What will happen to my report?

Your report will be screened by the Hotline for possible involvement by Child Protective Services. They will also forward the report to the law enforcement jurisdiction where the abuse/neglect allegedly occurred.

Law enforcement will make an independent decision as to whether to investigate. You may also want to make a report directly to law enforcement to ensure there are no delays in their receipt of the report.

When can I expect to hear from someone?

CPS and law enforcement will communicate with one another and determine urgency based on the information provided in the report. You may hear from someone with either agency within a few days to up to a week. Feel free to follow up with either or both agencies if you have not heard from someone within that time frame, or sooner, if there is a safety concern.

What if I am worried about my child’s safety and it is after business hours?

That should be expressed at the time of the report to the Hotline. They will ask questions to help assess this, such as “when will your child see the alleged offender next?” You also always have the option to call 911 if there are immediate safety concerns.

Do I have to leave my name if I call the Hotline regarding concern for a child?

You do not need to leave your name. The Child Protective Service agencies in both Nebraska and Iowa are required to assess alleged maltreatment of children based on the information given, even if given anonymously. However, the investigator can follow up with you to gather more information if they have your contact information.

At what point will Project Harmony become involved?

If cases meet certain criteria, such as alleged sexual abuse, serious physical abuse/neglect, witness to violence, etc., CPS and/or law enforcement will contact Project Harmony about scheduling an interview and /or medical exam. This should happen based on the urgency determined from the initial information. Either the investigator or someone from Project Harmony will reach out to you, but feel free to call Project Harmony at any point during this process to check on the status of your case.

 If I am asked to bring my child to Project Harmony, what can I expect while there?

You will meet with the multidisciplinary team to share information about your child. Then you will meet with a Family Advocate about therapy and other needed services while your child is being interviewed by a specially trained interviewer. After your child’s interview, we also offer medical exams by medical providers trained in child abuse/neglect. We have qualified staff to stay with your child while you meet with the advocate, but feel free to bring a trusted adult with you if you prefer. Please note that you could be at Project Harmony two hours or longer depending on how many children need interviews and medical exams.

We wish to thank you for your hospitality and the wonderful program and tour of Project Harmony. We are so fortunate to have an organization acting on the behalf of our children with such outstanding enthusiasm and dedication.

- Rotary Club of Omaha Northwest

Thank you so much for coming to Children’s and speaking to our staff. Your talk on “Understanding Poverty” was excellent, and I could see “wheels turning” as some staff members commented on simple ways their interactions might make a difference for children and parents.

- Patty Carrell, CMSW

I have felt that my input has been highly valued and respected when it comes to doing my job, and that is something that speaks volumes to the working environment here at Project Harmony.

- Brenda Jewell

We began collaborating with the Project Harmony through their Connections program last year, and we’ve continued the partnership. Connections represents an extremely valuable partnership and an opportunity to provide our students with a bridge to mental health services.

- Papillion La Vista Community Schools

Our experience and partnership with Project Harmony/Connections has been fantastic! It is a comfort knowing we have a partner who can connect our students and families with the appropriate resources in times of crisis or trauma.

- Millard Public Schools

This shadowing experience actually made me very interested in this field. One aspect that helped me narrow my choice of careers is the environment that Project Harmony had. It was very upbeat, cheerful and bright.

- UNMC High School Alliance Program – Student Journal

We would like to take this opportunity to thank Project Harmony for planning and delivering professional development to our 70 counselors, social workers and community counselors. We feel fortunate to have such a valuable resource in our community to partner with.

- Millard Public Schools

You have a top rate program – really national quality. I’m totally impressed.

- Lisa Fontes

At our last D2 Center Board meeting, I was describing the training and professional development we provide for our staff. At the top of the list was Project Harmony. Please know that you are providing an invaluable service to nonprofits in our community.

- Greg Emmel

Congratulations on the great media coverage of your Stewards class at Project Harmony on WOWT. You did a great job articulating the importance of prevention, and Susan was amazing too. Thank you so much for your partnership and all the important work you are doing.

- Cindy McElhinney – Darkness to Light

Just wanted to know that you made a difference in my life, and I will be using that momentum to make a difference in the lives of others. You are truly a rock star and a role model for me. Thank you for a new life I’m getting the chance to live.

- Anonymous

Many children through my caseload have received a backpack generously donated to the Project Harmony Triage Center. I have witnessed many faces light up when given the opportunity to pick out a new backpack, and I am very grateful for the generosity of the Junior League.

- DHHS – Children & Family Services

I have never felt as valued at other organizations like I do at Project Harmony. I really feel that the culture of a working environment is incredibly important. If an employee feels respected, valued and supported, that person will likely give more to fulfill the mission.

- Javier Castellote

Nick and Javier were great teachers and role players. It gave us an opportunity to see how someone in that situation would have reacted to our questions. They did a great job at showing us the difference between sympathy and empathy.

- Anonymous

I was able to shadow Mr. Nick Zadina. He was in charge of dealing with abused kids and help them. I am thankful to know all the information I learned during shadowing because it was eye opening.

- UNMC High School Alliance Program – Student Journal

The experience at Project Harmony was a deepening reminder of empathy that will be vital in my career as a nurse. I felt my perspective was widened on how others think, especially when discussing the assumptions we make.

- Anonymous

I didn’t know how many people work at Project Harmony, so I drew a lot to show how much Project Harmony means to me!

- Project Harmony Client

As difficult as a removal is on a child, the backpack they receive at Project Harmony provides a sense of belonging and hope. It truly is amazing something that seems so simple can change the perspective and shine light on these children.

- DHHS – Children & Family Services

Great leadership for a wonderful cause with outstanding long-term goals. Keep on doing all the good you do.

- Bill & Jean O’Conner

Project Harmony is the reason I started my journey in college. I just finished my associates and I'm going for my bachelors now in Child Protection and Juvenile Justice. Y'all helped my daughter back in early 2013 and I knew what I wanted to do with my life — help children.

- LaLa Ann

A young lady who works in our field told me that she loved what we do here at Project Harmony — she had been to Project Harmony seven years ago for a forensic interview. She said her positive experience was the biggest reason she is doing the work that she is today.

- Trainee

I found out that my foster son is going to have a forensic interview here at Project Harmony soon. It’s been interesting being on the other side of things and feeling so reassured that the child I care so deeply about is in very caring and capable hands.

- Jessica Kroeker

Nick demonstrated how one person could impact a huge group of student nurses by just attending his presentation. He gave me the reason, the courage to act, and the knowledge how to save victims that I will face in my future nursing career.

- Anonymous

I recently attended the Testifying Training course. Since that class I have been subpoenaed three times, and I had to testify at each hearing. Without this class I would have been less than prepared and too nervous to be credible. Thank you so much!

- Jenny Lewis

You are part of the solution.

The cycle of abuse does not have to continue, but we can’t end it alone. Anyone has the power to be someone who makes our community a safe place for all children.

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