In 1991, the Floyd County Child Abuse Protocol Committee recommended the establishment of a coordinated system designed to respond to child abuse cases.  The committee specifically recommended the establishment of a children’s center and the creation of a multidisciplinary child abuse investigation team. After detailed research and much effort, the Northwest Georgia Child Advocacy Center, known as “Harbor House”, was established in the fall of 1994.


The center serves as a neutral facility at which all sexual abuse cases brought to the attention of the police and the Department of Family and Children’s Services (DFCS) may be evaluated.   Harbor House’s mission is

  1. to provide a safe and caring place to evaluate the child who may have been abused,
  2. to encourage the collaboration of social and legal agencies for the benefit of the child, and
  3. to at all times lessen the trauma suffered by the child.

Harbor House Service Statistics

  • Forensic Interviews conducted per year, on average: 200
  • Approximately 90% of children referred for interviews/services are due to allegations of sexual abuse. The remainder are severe physical abuse, witness to child sexual or physical abuse, and witnesses to criminal activities.
  • More than 7,200 children have been interviewed at Harbor House since it was established.
  • Safety Awareness For Everyone (S.A.F.E) Program is presented by Shannon Bond and her (puppet) friend HermenaBelle. SAFE helps children develop necessary safety skills to prevent possible abuse and aids in supporting survivors of abuse by making them aware of available resources. It also addresses bullying and teaches other personal safety skills. From the start of the 2007-2008 school year through the finish of the 2019-2020 school year, Shannon has reached more than 18,500 elementary school children.
  • Stewards of Children training is provided through Harbor House. It is a sexual abuse prevention training program that educates adults to prevent, recognize, and react responsibly to child sexual abuse. It is presented, upon request, to adults who work with children – churches, youth centers, school personnel, etc. It can be presented to any group, big or small, that is interested in the program.
  • Harbor House currently provides family and child advocacy services to every client that we see. We also provide on-site trauma-focused therapy services for the children that we see, free of charge.

General Child Abuse Statistics: (local, state, and national)

  •  A report of child abuse is made every 10 seconds.
  • 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys is a victim of child sexual abuse. (2010 national study)
  • An estimated 638,000 children are confirmed victims of child abuse or neglect each year.
  • An estimated 4 children die every day from child abuse and neglect; 70% are under the age of 3.
  • 86% of children who are sexually abused are victimized by someone they know.
  • Approximately 1 out of every 100 children in Georgia were somehow involved with a substantiated incident of child abuse in 2016.


R. Allen Babcock

Executive Director 
Allen returns to Rome, where he was born and raised, after 20 years of teaching and leading in independent schools across the United States as well as in Switzerland and China. A lifelong learner, Allen recently completed his graduate studies in the organization leadership department at Columbia University’s Teachers College. Allen brings to the Harbor House team years of experience in leading organizations and a passion for service to our local communities. Allen and his husband, Richard, who live in Rome with their dogs Dolly & Leslie, enjoy traveling, theatre, dance, finding new restaurants, and spending time with family and friends.



Sarah Metroka

Therapist and CASA Trainer 

Sarah has a Master of Social Work. She has been working with children and families for over a decade. She currently provides therapeutic services geared toward children who have traumatic experiences. She loves being with her dogs, playing video games, and doing outdoor activities.





Alex Quarles

Family Advocate and Child Advocate 

Alex graduated from the University of West Georgia in 2022 with a Master of Sociology. Alex interned at Harbor House when she was obtaining her undergrad, and she enjoyed it so much that she decided to work here full-time. Alex enjoys traveling, reading, and listening to a variety of different kinds of music.





Brie Bishop

Forensic Interviewer and Family Advocate 

Brie graduated from the University of Tennessee Knoxville in 2022 with a degree in Educational Sign Language Interpreting and a minor in Criminology. She is currently obtaining her master’s in International Relations and Foreign Policy online at Liberty University. Brie’s future career plans are to work as a communications liaison on a federal level. Brie enjoys reading (preferably books of the thriller genre), musicals,                                                                                        baking, and her favorite movie franchise is the X-Men.


Kevin Hall

Family Advocate / Outreach Coordinator

Kevin graduated from Kennesaw State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Public Relations. Since beginning work at Harbor House in 2017, Kevin has held many roles, including Child Advocate, Family Advocate, and now Special Events and Marketing Manager. He organizes our fundraising events, manages our social media, and collaborates with sponsors. His hope is to grow the Harbor House programs so they can reach more children and families. Kevin enjoys video games, movies, Star Wars, golf, and just overall having fun!


Primary Service – Forensic Interviews

Interviews are conducted by trained personnel and are digitally recorded, preventing children from having to talk about their trauma repeatedly to different agencies.   Centralizing these services in a warm, home-like environment reduces the anxiety and confusion that may result from evaluating the child in multiple, sterile surroundings with fearful connotations (such as the hospital and police station).  Cases are staffed by a team of representatives of all agencies involved in the investigation, prosecution, and treatment of sexual abuse, including: Child Advocacy Center staff, medical professionals, law enforcement, DFCS, the District Attorney’s office, the Child Victim Advocate, juvenile court professionals/personnel, and mental health professionals.  This interdisciplinary approach to case management fosters a collaborative exchange of information and the development of a coordinated plan of action that will best serve the child.

Other Harbor House Services provided

The center offers in-service training to agency personnel, both on- and off-site.  Harbor House family and child advocates help the families of abuse victims identify appropriate community resources for medical care, counseling, education, and financial support. The center also provides trauma-focused therapy services to all clients at no cost to the family. Harbor House oversees the implementation of an elementary school child abuse prevention program offered in Floyd County called the SAFE program. The center pays for the cost of the program to be implemented in local schools by request. Prevention, early and supportive intervention, counseling, and education are our best tools in breaking the cycle of abuse. Harbor House also offers Darkness to Light’s Stewards of Children© training. This is a revolutionary sexual abuse prevention training program that educates adults to prevent, recognize, and react responsibly to child sexual abuse.