Dependency Advocacy Center (DAC) is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization providing interdisciplinary family defense legal services to indigent parents and children involved in Santa Clara County’s child welfare system. Our adult clients face the removal of their children due to concerns of abuse and neglect with a myriad of issues presented, including poverty, trauma, substance abuse, domestic violence, and mental health. DAC’s goal is to promote timely reunification and preservation of these families in a safe, healthy environment.
The four founders established DAC in June 2008 out of a passion for helping this underserved population as well as a strong belief that due process is of paramount importance in these highly sensitive cases. Along with asserting precise legal strategies, DAC has implemented innovative programs to serve families in a more comprehensive manner by employing in-house social workers and mentor parents. This multi-pronged approach to advocacy, which focuses on both protecting the client’s legal rights while simultaneously engaging the client to better his or her circumstances, is targeted toward making the family whole again.
DAC is funded almost entirely by a state agency, the Judicial Council of California, with some additional limited grant funding to sustain its Mentor Parent Program . Given the nature of the services DAC provides and our marginalized client population, this is truly a public interest endeavor. DAC is passionate about our mission and our commitment is reflected in the thoughtful work that we do.