Elkhart Child and Parent Services partners with Notre Dame to improve families' mental health


ELKHART COUNTY, Ind. - Child and Parent Services (CAPS) in Elkhart County has announced its partnership with the William J. Shaw Center for Children and Families at Notre Dame.

CAPS officials say the partnership is possible through the Health First Indiana Grant from the Elkhart County Health Department.

“We are grateful to the Elkhart County Health Department for supporting CAPS' mission of preventing child abuse and neglect,” said CAPS CEO Rebecca Shetler Fast. “We are pleased to be partnering with Notre Dame to build our capacity as an organization to recognize and respond to the mental health challenges of the children and families we serve at CAPS.”

This partnership is said to be a crucial development in CAPS' mission of preventing child abuse and neglect.

Kristin Valentino, director of the William J. Shaw Center and Notre Dame professor of psychology said, “We are thrilled for this partnership with CAPS to expand the reach of the Shaw Center’s efforts to advance the wellbeing of children and families in our community. We look forward to working together to provide tools and trainings that CAPS frontline staff can use to identify, support, and prevent mental health challenges among the families they serve.”

The grant-funded work includes evidence-based suicide prevention training and education for CAPS’ staff.

Officilas say the training will focus on mental wellness, stress management, and self-regulation skills.

William J. Shaw Center clinical staff will also assist with project implementation by offering clinical consultations and targeted mental health education to CAPS’ staff. 

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