How can home visitors help the women in my program?
Home visitation programs are:
Voluntary, non-punitive case management programs
Designed for pregnant and parenting mothers of small children to support their health, parenting and infant/toddler care
Designed to help mothers with a range of issues, including domestic violence
Some home visitors have begun to recognize that your programs might be the best ‘home’ to start these important case management services. Linking mothers and children with home visitors may help create a safety net of care that potentially extends years past your advocacy services. Establishing a deeper relationship between home visitation and domestic violence programs creates and opportunity to support ‘warm’ referrals in both directions.
Some home visitation programs have already developed such relationships with their local domestic violence agency. In fact, some partnerships have made it possible for the home visitor to bring the advocate to meet with a woman as part of case management to encourage deeper participation in domestic violence advocacy services. While we recognize that not all programs have this capacity, this partnership can create an opportunity for a direct connection to a domestic violence program that she might otherwise not make.
If you do not have a home visitation program available in your area, please consider giving pregnant and parenting mothers this perinatal safety card it has important information that may be useful to go over with her health care provider.
For sample Memorandum of Understanding between your program and a home visitation program and to learn more about home visitation generally: