CASA’s Supervised Exchange and Parenting Time (SEPT) program provides an environment that supports individual safety, accountability and healthy relationships between children and their parents in conflictive custody or Domestic Violence cases. CASA and TESSA collaborate on the program to stop abuse of child and adult victims and eliminate the social conditions that cause intimate partner violence. The SEPT Program provides two types of services: 1) Supervised Parenting Time and 2) Supervised Exchanges of children.
Supervised Parenting Time
Supervised parenting time provides visits between the children and visiting/non-custodial party in a supervised setting. Supervised Parenting time protects children from witnessing parental disputes, while also providing a safe place for parents and children to build positive relationships.
SEPT also provides for the transfer of children from one parent to the other with no contact between parties when they are sharing custody. Children feel a sense of safety as they are exchanged, for evenings or weekends, with the freedom to interact openly with each parent. A court order is not needed if both parties are in agreement to use the supervised exchange services. The benefits are as follows:
The benefits of the SEPT Program include:
- Both parties are held accountable for arrival and departure of exchanges at the designated time.
- SEPT is viewed by the courts as a neutral third party of interest.
- Information of arrival, departure, and concerns are documented and can be used as a formal court document.
- Eliminates child(ren) from witnessing any contention between parents.
- Aides in honoring restraining and protection orders.
- Parents will never have contact nor witness who the other parent is bringing to the exchanges.
- Keeps all parties involved SAFE.
Volunteer opportunities for the SEPT Program:
The SEPT Program provides an excellent opportunity for those who have busy lives but are committed to making a difference in our community.
The role of SEPT Volunteers (facilitators) is to:
- Exchange children from one parent to another in a supervised setting
- Monitor court-ordered parenting time (supervised visits)
- Document observations during parenting time or exchanges
- 18 years old
- No felony convictions
- Complete 45 hours of initial training + 6 hours of program observation
- Complete 8 hours annual in-service training
- Maintain confidentiality of all client and court information
- Ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing
- Ability to respect and relate to people from various backgrounds
- Desire to enable children to spend time with their parents
- Commit to serve 2-3 sessions each month (7-12 hours)
- Commit to 12 months in the program