The Children’s Center of Southwest Missouri

The Children’s Center of Southwest Missouri

We designed an addition and renovation for this child advocacy center.


It was important to make this building continue to look and feel as much like a house as possible. These special organization deals with a very sensitive and scary subject, especially for children – child abuse. The least we can do as designers is to help them feel safe, invited and protected while inside this building rather than the space feeling sterile and uncaring. The challenge is that even though the space needs to feel comfortable it also has to be safe, private and clinically adequate for exams.


You can’t tell just by looking, but the interview rooms are specially designed to help keep conversations happening inside the room from being heard outside the room. When dealing with sound transference it must be dealt with in three dimensions – it’s not just about the walls but also about the crawlspace / floor area and the ceiling / attic space. Sound travels in all direction and must be considered when trying to make spaces safe for private conversations. These conversations are recorded and observed by the police so that the children don’t have to tell – and relive – their stories over and over.

What the Client Says:

Stephanie and her staff at Ireland Architects have been great to work with on our project. Stephanie has done an amazing job from the very beginning! She coordinated our bid process, met with prospective construction bidders and helped us to oversee the project until it was completed. She was always available and willing to answer any questions that we had. She was always looking out for our best interests as a client, but also worked very well with the construction company that completed our work. I would highly recommend Ireland Architects for any construction project.

Matt Stewart

Executive Director

Children’s Center of Southwest Missouri