Therapeutic Visitation Services help families maintain contact, improve family relationships, and develop the insights, skills and supports that improve their chances of reunification. Clients are often referred for these services by the court or DCFS. But, these services are also available to clients who have been estranged from a family member and seek support in establishing or reengaging in a relationship.
The main goals of Therapeutic Visitation Services are:
- To help children heal from any trauma they have experienced (e.g. from abuse, neglect or family separation)
- To assure that children maintain safe contact with parents and siblings
- To promote improved child-caregiver relationships
- To help parents understand and address the safety concerns that led to the intervention of DCFS
- To help parents develop and demonstrate the protective capacities that help parents keep children safe
Although we do not provide recommendations to the court about dependency status or placement decisions, we help families understand the requirements of their service plans, and we inform DCFS and collateral contacts of the family’s progress so that they can make informed recommendations to the court.
Therapeutic Visitation Services can be provided at the office, and (with court approval) in community-based locations such as the family home.
Many parents participating in Therapeutic Visitation Services have never had access to positive parent role models or parent-training. We offer them highly effective, evidenced-based parent training and we coach them as they practice new skills of attunement, nurturing and safe limit-setting. We create the supportive atmosphere that allows parents to offer their very best to their children.
As families progress, we work with DCFS and/or the courts to adjust the treatment setting toward an increasingly natural structure – always seeking to offer families the least restrictive setting necessary to assure safety. This also helps adjust and modulate the level of support parents receive – assuring that they always experience the “optimal challenge” that promotes the development of new knowledge and skills without overwhelming them.
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