Family Services

The Family Services Unit operates under the guidelines of Wisconsin Statutes Chapter 48 and Chapter 938.  In Chapter 48 the legislative directive mandates each county’s child welfare agency must prevent abuse and/or neglect, protect children, and when appropriate, preserve the unity of the family by assisting families in changing the circumstances which are harmful; when necessary terminate a parent’s rights and provide permanence for the child(ren), such as adoption or guardianship with a relative.  In Chapter 938 the legislative directive mandates protection to the community, impose accountability, and equip juveniles with the skills to live responsibly and productively.    

The primary actions to carry out this mission include child maltreatment assessments; processing CHIPS, JIPS, and Delinquency petitions through court; case managing court ordered and voluntary client cases; Kinship Care assessments; recruiting, licensing, and training foster parents; and developing and monitoring service programs.  The Family Services staff works in collaboration with the schools, law enforcement, the court, and the communities to meet the needs of Lafayette County’s children and families. The Family Services Unit receives the following state allocations to assist in meeting the state’s mandates and standards.


  • IV-E Reimbursement for Legal Services, which are applied to Corporation Counsel contract fees.  This agency has taken advantage of this allocation since it was first offered in 2003.    
  • Promoting Safe & Stable Family (PSSF) for support & prevention programming.    
  • Independent Living Programs  
  • Community Intervention Program    
  • Foster Parent Pre-Service Training Allocation  While the state mandates actions by the county, it does not go so far as to mandate specific services. 


Each county has the ability to develop their own “menu” of services to meet the needs of their county’s residents.  The following services have been developed to meet the needs of Lafayette County’s children and families.   


Parenting Program - funded with the Safe & Stable Family allocation.  The services provided by the Parenting Program include the provision of parenting skills instruction for all developmental ages - birth to adolescence; living skills for adults and children; independent living skills program, home management skills for adults, and visitation supervision.  The objective of these services is to improve the parenting/living skills of parents who are at risk of or who have maltreated their children thus ensuring a safer home environment for children by preventing/eliminating further maltreatment.   


Transportation Program - The Transportation Program utilizes volunteer drivers to transport children and family members to court ordered treatment related appointments.  The objective is to remove the lack of transportation options as a barrier to treatment provision.     


Respite Services - This program provides temporary placement of children with a foster family or a certified child care provider when families are in crisis or need a break.  This service is available to agency clients and non-clients.       


Family Services Staff: 

Melissa Hill, Manager;  Megan Shager; Paige Jacobson; Amy Thompson; Christa Cook; Ashlee Glowacki