When safety concerns for a child develop, a judge will order supervised visits for a family. CAPS’ supervised visitation program provides a place where parents can spend time with their child in a safe, family-friendly environment.

“We ensure that children are in a safe, neutral environment where they can enjoy quality time with their parents,” said Supervised Visitation Director Lashell Brown. Brown has worked at CAPS for six years and has quadrupled the number of families served. “We currently serve 80 families a week,” said Brown.

Brown works to accommodate families by providing visitation scheduling every day of the week, except Saturday. The program provides multiple private spaces, such as a playroom and a kitchen, so that families can bond by doing normal, everyday activities like sharing a meal or playing a game. In addition, the visits are monitored by facilitators who are trained to supervise parents and children in a non-intrusive manner, but may intervene if a safety concern arises.

In May, Supervised Visitation was generously awarded $600 by Alpha Rho – Elkhart chapter of Tri Kappa. The grant will provide materials for a pizza night, where families can bond by making pizzas together. The grant will also give the supervised visitation program a chance to host an ice cream sundae night. In the past, Brown has used donations to fund a pumpkin painting night and a Thanksgiving dinner, activities that visiting parents sometimes miss out on.

“Donations to our program help us supply quality time to our families,” said Brown. “Donations assist visiting parents with their fees, so kids still get to see their parents even if the parent can’t afford the fee that week.”

The cost of a visitation is $50 to $60. To sponsor a child and parent in need, please visit https://give.capselkhart.org/give/42953/#!/donation/checkout or call 574-295-2277. For more information about the program, visit capselkhart.org/supervised-visits.

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