Family Visitation Services
The Family Visitation Service provided by Hearts and Homes enables safe and secure parenting time for non-custodial parents and their children. The visitation monitor acts as a confidential and neutral third party, observing and monitoring the meeting and ensuring the child’s well-being. Visits take place in a welcoming, home-like environment, with comfortable furniture, toys, books and games. The building and the visitation rooms are equipped with unobtrusive video surveillance cameras and recordings can be made of visits.
Supervised parenting time can also be arranged within the home or at other locations.
Appointments can be scheduled for an hour, up to a full day. In a typical visit, the parent arrives at Hearts and Homes fifteen minutes before the child is brought to the facility and waits privately in the visitation room. The child is generally brought to Hearts and Homes by the foster carer or custodial parent, but pick-up and drop-off arrangements can also be arranged by Hearts and Homes staff. The child comes to the visitation room with the visitation monitor, and there is no contact between the parent and the person who brings the child to the facility. The visitation monitor stays in the room during the visit unless arrangements have been made for monitoring to occur via video surveillance from an adjacent room. At the conclusion of the visit, the visitation monitor takes the child to the foster carer or custodial parent. The visiting parent waits in the visitation room until after the child and carer have left the parking lot of the facility. The pattern of the visit will take into account the needs of the child or children, the wishes of the carers and parents, and any treatment plan, legal agreement or court order. We may provide off-site visits provided all parties involved are in agreement.
The planned parenting time serves a variety of purposes. Visits promote positive interactions between parents and their children, who do not live with them, strengthen parent-child relationships, enable parents and children to maintain attachment, reduce feelings of loss or abandonment, and provide parents with an opportunity to demonstrate parenting skills. Hearts and Homes can work with licensed therapists to assess and evaluate parent-child interactions and parenting skills, as well as progress towards targeted changes. Visits can also be an important component of transition planning or problem solving. Hearts and Homes can assist parents in acquiring relevant skills and can provide input on safety, discipline, nutrition and child development as part of an overall plan.
The Family Advancement Specialist cares for the well-being of the child. This includes checking that the parent is generally appropriate in his or her interactions and does not appear to be influenced by chemicals, drugs or alcohol. Visits will be cancelled if the visitation monitor has concerns. Personnel are trained to provide unbiased & safe supervision, documentation, and reporting. Videotaping equipment ensures an accurate record is obtained when necessary.
Families who use family visitation include any family that believes itself in need of the service, those who have children in out of home care, those who are experiencing conflict with separation or divorce, and those where a parent is under investigation for alleged domestic, physical or sexual abuse. Families are referred by counselors, Child and Family Services, courts, attorneys, police, and human service organizations. We also encourage self referrals by those who believe they could benefit from the service.
Program Fees: We charge a fee for supervised visitation. This information will be given when you make appointment.
Intake appointments can be made by calling 406-585-8544, Monday through Friday, from 9am to 4pm.
Family Visitation Payment: