Statewide Access Site for Child Mental Health Wraparound Program

We are the Statewide Access Site for the Child Mental Health Wraparound (CMHW) program from the Indiana Division of Mental Health and Addiction (DMHA). We are the state’s first single point of entry to help families apply for the wraparound program if they have children with serious mental health or behavioral challenges.

Our Family Liaisons assist youth & families with the wraparound services’ application process which includes an initial assessment process to collaborate with families in identifying any ongoing need for supports.

For all children and families who may not qualify for the wraparound services through DMHA, Child Advocates assists in making referrals to other potential resources within their community in an effort to support their social, emotional, and behavioral well-being.

One priority for Child Advocates, as the Statewide Access Site, is to intentionally increase efforts to identify gaps in services for those children who may not have regular access to mental & emotional health care.

To gather more information about the CMHW program from the Indiana Division of Mental Health & Addiction (DMHA) for which Child Advocates helps families apply, email Sophie Foster, the Director of our Statewide Access Site, at sophie@childadvocates.net.

And learn more about the Child Mental Health Wraparound Services from DMHA.

Direct Representation Program

Our Direct Representation Program provides attorneys to represent children in CHINS (Child in Need of Services) and TPR (Termination of Parental Rights) cases. Children have many rights, such as the right to be present and participate in hearings, the right to be part of their DCS case plan, and the right to information regarding their case. Sometimes, children need attorneys to advocate for what they want. The goal of the Direct Representation Program is to empower children with information so they can make the best decisions about their case, and to ensure the child’s procedural justice, or fairness, in the court process.

If you know of a child in a CHINS/TPR case who would like an attorney and they are currently removed from their home and 12 years of age or older, please go to this link to make a confidential referral: Direct Representation Referral Form

Learn more about the importance of legal representation for youth. And watch a video about the program which includes a story of how Direct Representation impacted a teenager’s life when our attorneys represented his voice in court.

Educational Liaison Program

Our Educational Liaison Program works to improve educational outcomes for children who need additional social, emotional, and educational support to succeed in school due to trauma and other life challenges.

Our educational liaisons collaborate with school staff, parents/caregivers, and service providers to develop educational plans that accommodate and support each child’s unique needs.

We examine a student’s social and emotional needs as the foundation for all educational planning and that focus helps us more effectively address the issues that are impacting their academic success.

To get full details about our Educational Liaison program, including our vision and plan, success stories, and to make a referral for help from our educational liaisons click here.

Legal Services

Our legal department at Child Advocates is comprised of ten attorneys with many years of experience in child welfare. Our attorneys are committed to providing legal assistance to GAL (Guardian ad Litem) and CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) agencies with the goal of achieving permanency for children in the child welfare system.

Our attorneys at Child Advocates provide a wide variety of legal services to best accommodate the specific needs of our community’s most vulnerable children. These services include but are not limited to; appellate work, motion practice, legal consultation, petitions, testimony and trial assistance, training, immigration, CAPTA, etc.

Click here for our referral form: Legal Referral Form

Click to learn more about the many legal services we offer. And watch a video with an overview of our attorneys’ dedicated work for children, why they do it, and one story of impact on a toddler’s life that helped him finally find a safe, secure, and permanent home.

Mediation and Facilitation Program

Our Mediation and Facilitation Program helps resolve conflicts between the parties involved with children in child welfare cases. We hope to help children avoid court trials and find them a safe and permanent sooner.

The Courts strive to protect abused and neglected children using an adversarial approach to problem-solving. Many families benefit from our different approach. For over twenty years, the Mediation and Facilitation Program has been creating opportunities for parents, case managers, guardians ad litem, social workers, service providers, foster parents, and lawyers to bring their knowledge and unique skills together in a confidential process to craft individualized solutions to the problems that these children and families face.

Learn more about how mediations and permanency facilitations improve the lives of children. And watch a video about how mediation resolves conflicts and how that impacts families and children. You’ll also hear one mediation story of transformation for children whose future was once uncertain.

For additional information or to schedule a mediation or permanency facilitation, please contact us at mediations@childadvocates.net.

Interrupting Racism for Children

In Marion County, black children represent 11% of the child population; however, they represent 40.9% of children in the child welfare system. Racial disparities in child welfare, income, education, and health continue to exist and serve as barriers to just and sustainable communities. Interrupting Racism for Children educates and moves individuals to take action to stop racism in its tracks, creating a future where children thrive and their race does not predict their life outcomes.

We have expanded our Interrupting Racism for Children (IRFC) workshops from the child welfare system into communities across Indiana. Thousands of people from every race, ethnicity, gender, and walk of life have attended our race equity workshops over the last decade.

This is where change begins. It starts with us.

Join us to make a lasting impact on all children. Learn more. And watch a video to hear about the actions people, from all walks of life, are taking after attending our “no blame, no shame” workshops. And learn about the phenomenal reaction of young people who attend IRFC workshops. Some of them have now joined our Youth Against Racial Injustice (YARI) program.