Supervised Child Contact Sessions

Our supervised child contact sessions provide a safe environment for children from separated families to have contact with their parents or other important people in their lives.

Supervised contact may be necessary if it’s thought there may be some risk to the welfare of the child during contact. This could be for a variety of reasons: these may be about anger or hostility between parents, issues around domestic violence, alcohol or drugs misuse or concerns over parenting skills.

How do sessions work?

Referrals to our child contact centre can be made by professionals such as a family law solicitor or by a social worker or from Cafcass following an order by the courts.  Parents may also undertake private supervised contact but both parents must sign the referral form and Relate Dorset and South Wiltshire will require a Risk Assessment before this can go ahead.  Follow this link for a pdf version of the referral form, a Word version is available on request.

Parents are invited to a separate pre-visit meeting to plan the contact. During this, we’ll find out more about your family and current situation, and you’ll be able to ask any questions. You’ll also have the chance to see the premises and meet the staff. If you’re the resident parent (living with the child), you’ll be asked to bring your child so they can take a look around and become familiar with the centre. However, to reduce costs to the parents it is possible to roll this visit into the first contact session; please discuss this when you first contact us.

During a contact session, there are two Supervised Contact Workers in the room and one stays in sight and sound of the child at all times.  They will make notes of what they see happening during contact. These notes will be seen by your professional referrer to assist in next steps including Cafcass (if referred by them) who report to court. Information is confidential unless there is a question of a child or adult being at risk of danger.

The resident parent is not generally permitted to remain at the centre during contact. Staff spend time with both parents (separately if required) before and after the contact session to talk about how the contact is going and discuss any issues or concerns.

Towards the end of your series of contact sessions you’ll have a review meeting to share views about how things have gone and to think about what you’d like to do next.

Other useful information

Appointments are not confirmed until payment is made.  Any session cancelled with less than 48 hours’ notice will forfeit the session payment if cancelled by the non-resident parent and the deposit if cancelled by the resident parent.

We are an accredited member of the National Association of Child Contact Centres (NACCC).

NACCC accredited logo

Contact Sessions can be arranged Monday to Saturday, usually during the day, but we remain flexible and can discuss your requirements.

For more information please email CCI@relatedorset.org.uk or call Alison on 01305 257 206

How much does it cost?

If the supervised contact is court ordered via Cafcass and specific agreement has been made, there is no charge to either parent. Six sessions are generally made available under a court order. However, this is not standard practice, and most people will need to pay for the service. Cafcass have outsourced court ordered supervision to an out of county provider who will direct you to Relate Dorset if appropriate.

 

Our prices from 1st April 2022 are as follows:

Registration fee per parent £100

Pre-visit per parent £70 

Deposit per parent (refundable subject to criteria) £105

Initial 1 hour supervised contact session (plus staggered arrival and departure times by all parties, written observation notes, administration relating to arrangement of session) £95

Ongoing one hour supervised contact session (plus staggered arrival and departure times by all parties, written observation notes, administration relating to arrangement of session) £95

Ongoing two hour supervised contact session (plus staggered arrival and departure times by all parties, written observation notes, administration relating to arrangement of session) £190

Final written report to referrer (if requested) £60.