By Moisés Barón, Ph.D.
Exactly 130 years ago, a powerful idea to create change for those less fortunate in San Diego was manifested by philanthropic women who wanted to give their skills, time and treasure. Their desire for change came in realizing that many women were being displaced because of an increase in population and government’s inability to provide sufficient law enforcement and public services at the end of the 19th century. Women were left abandoned, widowed, or in poverty with their children.
Their investment of $1,000 in 1887 to buy a home in downtown’s Gaslamp District to shelter these women sparked a remarkable 130-year journey that has led the San Diego Center for Children to evolve as a trusted leader in helping children and families struggling with mental, emotional and behavioral disorders.
Today, the Center employs over 370 culturally-and trauma-informed team members and professionals to serve holistically the needs of over 1,000 individuals daily across 8 county locations and within hundreds of homes, schools and communities. Evidence-based therapeutic, educational, foster care and transition services are accessible to families of all backgrounds. With a superior quality of care, nationally accredited by The Joint Commission, each youth receives individualized treatment that is strength-based, child and family centered and culturally relevant.
The Center continues to further its mission through generous support from individual and corporate donors and is proud to celebrate its 130th Anniversary through a variety of special events, including our gala, “Protecting Hope and Creating Dreams”, at the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina on May 4th.
The idea and passion that was sparked 130 years ago is not only rooted in the Center’s history, but also San Diego’s philanthropic legacy. We remain grounded in our rich history but are driven by our vision to bring care to even more families in need through innovation and best practices. We invite you to join us in celebrating more years of bringing hope and creating change in the lives of those in need in our community.