Another update regarding the interim plan for Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) was sent in a campus-wide email on Monday afternoon. CAPS Director Jennifer D’Andrea provided more specifics about the help that Campus Advocate from the Women and Family Center (WFC) of Middletown Lindsay DeFrancisco will be providing. The information in the email is a direct follow-up of a CAPS update made prior to the beginning of the semester.
“We welcome students to come by and meet [DeFrancisco] during the last week of September,” D’Andrea wrote in the campus-wide email. “She will be here on Wednesday, September 27th from 11 AM – 2 PM and Friday, September 29th from 11 AM to 1 PM…. We are very pleased to have [DeFrancisco’s] assistance and support while we work to fill this critical position.”
The decision to bring in DeFrancisco while CAPS searches for someone to replace Alysha Warren was based in part on past relationships.
“Wesleyan has a longstanding partnership with the Women and Families Center, a nonprofit agency focused on supporting survivors of sexual violence,” D’Andrea wrote in an email to The Argus. “[DeFrancisco] is their campus advocate so she is a logical connection for our students, and she was willing to help us on an interim basis while we search for a new Survivor Advocate and Community Educator.”
In turn, this move is also beneficial to the WFC of Middletown.
“As the campus advocate for Women and Families Center Sexual Assault Crisis Services (your local crisis agency), we have been trying to find ways to strengthen our partnership with Wesleyan and for me to be more accessible to students when needed,” DeFrancisco wrote in an email to The Argus. “With the departure of Warren, we discussed ways in which I can fill in for the areas she overlooked until the position is filled.”
DeFrancisco has a plethora of past exposure that has prepared her to provide assistance with this interim plan.
“The experience that I have as a counselor and advocate for WFC perfectly aligns with the work that is done at CAPS,” DeFrancisco wrote. “I have experience with individual counseling and support groups. Advocacy also plays a major role in the work that I do as I can help students seek additional resources on campus and/or in the community as well as discuss what their rights are, medical/legal options, and self-care.”
In addition to holding office hours for students affected by gender-based violence on Wednesdays and Fridays and being available for confidential appointments, DeFrancisco will be running a Survivors Support Group that will meet on Wednesdays in the DHC. Her hours can be found on the CAPS website.
“Lindsay knows Wesleyan students as well as the resources in the Middletown community, and she cares deeply about supporting survivors of sexual violence,” D’Andrea wrote.
Camille De Beus can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @cdebeus.