The Corina Field Carroll Fund was established in 2012, in memory of Dr. Corina Field Carroll. Known by its initials as the CFCF, the Fund was first chaired by Dr. Carroll's daughter Anna and later by her son David, to honor Dr. Carroll's memory by advancing the protection of children.
The CFCF began when Dr. Carroll lay dying in late January 2012. The family knew so many people loved her they'd get a ton of flowers filling up their house. Corina's husband John asked her daughter Anna, then 15 years old, and her brothers Ed, then 18, and David, then just 11, if they wanted people to send flowers to the house, or instead to direct donations to a designated charity. Anna said they should request contributions for a non-profit they would found in Corina's name. Her brothers agreed.
Choosing a focus for the Fund was a process of exploring options over the following months. Everyone agreed that it had to involve protecting children, due to Dr. Carroll's fervent love for kids. After forming a board of directors including two of her partners, a third respected local pediatrician, and other friends of Corina's, they decided to focus the CFCF initially on supporting child abuse counseling at the Children’s Advocacy Center of Hamilton County (CACHC). Counseling at the CACHC had been underfunded due to budget cuts by the state of Tennessee. The CFCF pledged $25,000 to enable the CACHC to bring aboard an additional therapist, greatly expanding the number of local children and families able to receive counseling.
Child abuse was a problem that Corina had encountered early in her career as a doctor and which disturbed her greatly as a caring pediatrician -- not only because it causes such horrible suffering for children, but because it is so difficult in many cases for well-intentioned doctors, nurses, teachers and other concerned adults to actually help the children involved. Too often families, the police or the courts are reluctant and/or slow to act in response to evidence of a problem. The tragic result is that children too often stay in abusive situations, causing them more suffering and more lasting damage.
Therapy sessions not only help bring peace of mind to violated children, they also work towards preventing the same horrors from happening in the future: tragically, an abused child will often turn into an abusive adult if not property treated to work through their pain. (In fact, it has emerged in recent years that the most common element in mass shooting crimes in the United States -- found in essentially every case, according to researchers -- is that the shooter had a prior history as a perpetrator or victim of some form of domestic abuse.) At the CACHC and other Child Advocacy Centers around the country, therapy sessions are free of charge and last as long as the therapist and child feel they need to last. The CFCF was granted IRS approval as a 501(c)(3) charity in early 2013 and fulfilled its $25,000 pledge to the CACHC that summer.
Subsequently, the Fund initiated a Grand Rounds educational series on child abuse at Erlanger Children's Hospital. The first annual CFCF-sponsored presentation was delivered by renowned child abuse specialist Dr. Carole Jenny, to a packed room of pediatric residents and staff in September 2014. Subsequent speakers have included Drs. Deborah Lowen of Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Jaime Pittenger of the University of Kentucky, and Walter Lambert of the University of Miami -- all noted pediatricians and thought leaders on child protection who lead multidisciplinary teams responding to child abuse in their respective regions. The yearly Grand Rounds, hosted and introduced by the CFCF chairperson, have aimed to advance the protection of children and to commemorate Corina's long and dedicated involvement with Chattanooga's leading center of pediatrics. Starting in 2019, this tradition will be carried on annually at Children's Hospital at Erlanger by a new 501(c)(3), the Chattanooga Pediatric Foundation, which can accept tax-deductible contributions in Dr. Carroll's memory at 910 Blackford Street, Chattanooga, TN 37403.
Starting in 2015, under leadership of CFCF chair David Carroll and vice-president Ed Carroll, the CFCF launched a software initiative -- first on a local level, then nationally. The Fund initially created mobile device apps developed by Ed Carroll and donated to the Children's Advocacy Center in Chattanooga. This activity expanded in 2016 to California, where all three Carroll children chose to attend college. Ed, a Computer Science major at Harvey Mudd College, and David, now attending Pomona College, then co-developed a prototype app aimed to be useful for education on -- and reporting of -- child abuse across the USA.
The CFCF national prototype app is downloadable here. During 2017-18 it was offered as a free service to state and national organizations working on child abuse and child protection issues. The app code remains available to any nonprofit or governmental entity as a free donation, and can be adapted to the specific needs and content of interested state and national organizations..
The below links provide information about the CFCF and its work for the protection of children: