The Children’s Program at Women In Distress provides a variety of services to children of all ages such as respite care, parenting classes, children’s groups and individual counseling. These services are provided at the Jim & Jan Moran Family Center and in shelter with parental permission.
Children who are affected by domestic violence are often in need of a multitude of services when they come with their families to Women In Distress for assistance. Children are assessed for abuse and basic needs within 72 hours of their arrival at the shelter or when children’s services are sought at the Family Center.
Whether or not these children are the targets of physical violence, they may be traumatized by their experiences and observations, which can result in a wide variety of emotional and behavioral problems. Child Advocates work to create a warm, friendly environment, and utilize various activities that focus on the child’s safety, critical life skills and education.
Some of the services Women In Distress offers to children and parents include:
Women In Distress also provides free respite care for children of domestic violence victims who are seeking services. Many victims of domestic violence are unable to share with loved ones that they are seeking services, therefore childcare is often a barrier to receiving help. The objectives of respite care are to provide safe supervision of children while parents receive services, to encourage healthy interaction with peers and to provide a sense of well-being.
Through the Children’s program, Women In Distress works to combat the effects of domestic violence on children and provide a safe environment where children can learn the tools for building healthy relationships and social skills.