The Center for Children and Families’ lineage dates back to one of the earliest for the care of the community’s young people – the Juvenile Shelter – a legacy program of the 1969 State Children’s Code.More The Beginnings
The Past 40 years
Center for Children and Families Inc. (CCFI) began in 1969 as a shelter for youth 0-18 years old who needed a safe and nurturing place to stay while waiting to be placed in foster care. Known then as “Juvenile Services Inc. (JSI),” we met a vital need in the community while laying a foundation for our mission “to improve the lives of children…” The Center’s services focus on three main areas: healing children, empowering youth, and strengthening families.
We recognized that children need a way to heal from traumatic experiences and need parents who can care for them in the best way they know how. Throughout our first two decades we initiated services to heal child abuse and neglect and to support and educate parents. These programs include our Parents Assistance program to assist parents and children struggling with issues of child abuse and neglect, our Divorce Visitation Arbitration program for parents in high-conflict with children caught in the middle of stressful situations, and our Teenage Parenting program for teens needing to learn how to care for their little ones.
Because children need a network of caring adults, and parents need a community of support, during our third decade we added a third segment to our services to cultivate neighborhood connections. Our Neighborhood Centers program provides enriching relationship-based activities for both children and their parents during out-of-school time.
In 2007, CCFI expanded services in healing child abuse and neglect by starting our Trauma Focused Services. These services are for children who have suffered abuse and neglect and provide support for their foster and adoptive parents. While CCFI has always worked in issues of child abuse and neglect, this program expands our work in this area. Later that year we launched our Caring Adult Network for community members to partner with CCFI in our work through support and volunteering.
The Next 40 Years
We envision our community becoming a place where every child grows up safe, nurtured and loved. To accomplish this vision, our Caring Adult Network volunteers will be trained and connected to opportunities to provide nurturing support for children at day cares, school classrooms, out-of-school programs, and every place children are. We want to cultivate neighborhood connections in every neighborhood in our community, so that every child has a Caring Adult, and every parent has support.