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 sessions 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 the child contact centre are made via Cafcass following an order by the courts or by a social worker or solicitor. Parents may also undertake private supervised contact.
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.
During a contact session, the contact supervisor stays in sight and sound of the child at all times making notes of what happens during contact. These notes will be seen by your Cafcass officer (if appropriate) to help them with the report they have to write for court or will be sent to the professional referrer to assist in next steps. 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.
How much does it cost?
If the supervised contact is court ordered via Cafcass there is no charge to either parent. Six sessions are generally made available under a court order.
If you aren’t referred by the courts, there is a charge. We try to provide relationship support to everyone, and so may have bursary funding available. For current details please call us on 01305 257206 and ask for Supervised Child Contact or the Services Manager.
Our prices are as follows:
- Pre-visit per person, £61
- Two hour supervised contact session, £147
- Deposit from resident parent, £100
- Written report to referrer, £51
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).
The NACCC launched an awarness campaign in Oct 16 called #lostparents drawing attention to the need for Child Contact Centres. You can view the short video here:
Contact Sessions can be arranged Monday to Friday, usually during the day.