Children’s Bureau, Inc. is a private, nonprofit agency serving children since 1851. The agency
offers an array of human services to children and families in 44 Indiana counties.
Children’s Bureau works to prevent child abuse by educating communities about risk issues and working with parents individually to provide assistance before abuse or neglect occurs. We set the pace for Indiana by piloting a nationally recognized prevention model that boasts a 97% success rate for keeping families out of the child welfare system.
Often, the first interaction a family has with Children’s Bureau is through the Children’s Shelter, which provides crisis intervention and respite services for families in Central Indiana. Examples of crisis situations include homelessness, physical or mental health emergencies, or domestic violence without alternative support systems. Caregivers in crisis situations who are
temporarily unable to provide safe, healthy environments for their children can voluntarily
place the “at-risk” child(ren), newborn to 17 years of age, in the shelter for up to 21 consecutive days. Respite services are central to abuse and neglect prevention.
Families who contact the Shelter in need of services are referred to Children’s Bureau’s Community Partners for Child Safety, a statewide child abuse prevention program. This in- home visitation program is led by licensed case workers who assist families in developing and meeting specific family-centered goals. These goals may include finding safe, affordable housing, seeking employment or advancing job skills, or addressing addictions and/or mental health concerns. Participants are also introduced to other community support services to address their needs.
Ongoing childcare needs often create significant stress for low-income families, and can trigger neglect and abuse situations. Children’s Bureau administers Child Care Development Fund, a federal program that assists low-income families in obtaining child care so that they can work or attend school.
Another key component of our prevention efforts is encouraging fathers to be active, positive participants in the parenting of their children. Forever Fathers serves dads whose children may be at-risk for involvement in the child welfare system. Father Engagement serves fathers whose children are currently involved in the child welfare system. Both programs offer free therapy
and counseling to address healthy relationships, co-parenting, positive parenting, employment
and other self-supporting goals, with the ultimate goal of increasing paternal engagement.
Unfortunately, child abuse and neglect does occur. Our Home-based Casework and Therapy program serves families whose children are currently involved in the child welfare system . It provides child-centered, family-focused services, primarily within the home, to prevent family disruption or to achieve reunification with children where abuse, neglect or juvenile delinquency has been a problem. Home-based family services focus on educating and empowering families so future instances of neglect or abuse do not occur.
Children with a long history of abuse are in particular need of services. Rachel Glick Courage Center provides secure residential facilities for youth ages 10-17 who suffer from emotional/behavioral disorders caused by traumatic events such as physical abuse, sexual abuse and domestic violence. The average length of stay for residents is six-eight months.
Children’s Bureau provides an array of Foster Care and Adoption programs from recruitment and training of foster and adoptive families, placement of children, and post-adoptive counseling. It also provide Older Youth Services to youth who are aging out of the child welfare system including residential programs, case management and therapy, etc. to encourage a smooth transition into independent and self-sufficient adulthood.
Please visit www.childrensbureau.org to learn more about our services or how you can help further our mission.