On Nov. 1, 2005, Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services became one of the largest private providers of children’s mental-health services in Los Angeles County. The agency achieved this position of prominence through the merger of two leading child-welfare organizations: The Sycamores and Hathaway Children & Family Services. Each organization brought with it roots reaching back many decades.
For its part, The Sycamores had a rich history of more than 100 years that began in 1902 when Fannie Rowland – a civic-minded, caring resident of Pasadena – founded the City of Roses’ first orphanage. Originally named the Pasadena Children’s Training Society, the orphanage was housed in a two-story, Craftsman bungalow at the corner of Wilson Avenue and Del Mar Boulevard. For six decades, the Pasadena Children’s Training Society remained at that location, although it expanded to include four cottages and a hospital. As Southern California’s child-welfare system grew, so too did The Sycamores. In 1967, the agency opened a residential treatment center in Altadena – a therapeutic home away from home where severely challenged youngsters could receive nurturing, healing care. In 1996, The Sycamores opened its first administrative offices in Pasadena – a site that currently serves as Hathaway-Sycamores’ administrative headquarters.
Hathaway Children & Family Services has an equally storied history. The agency’s back story was born in 1919, when the Kiddie Koop orphanage was founded in the rapidly growing metropolitan area of Los Angeles to meet the needs of children whose mothers were deceased or otherwise unable to care for their offspring. This facility, originally located on East 28th Street, moved in 1924 to more spacious quarters on South Catalina Street, and again in 1928 to an almost two-acre site in Highland Park. Fast forward to 1963, and the Kiddie Koop was touched by Tinsel Town. Specifically, the trust of legendary filmmaker Cecil B. DeMille bequeathed his 300-acre estate – located in Sylmar – to the orphanage. This sprawling site provided a scenic setting for children to receive residential treatment, mental-health services, and special education in a nurturing environment.
Today, Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services stands tall in the child-welfare arena, providing a comprehensive continuum of services to thousands of children and families annually through a network of facilities stretching across the greater Los Angeles area including the San Fernando Valley, San Gabriel Valley, and the Antelope Valley. Services include:
• a residential-treatment center for youth ages 6 through 18;
• foster care and adoption services;
• a nonpublic school;
• school-based and outpatient-mental-health services;
• wraparound and in-home counseling services;
• a transitional-living program for teens and young adults;
• a family resource center;
• a grief and loss center for children.
Looked to as a leader in the children’s mental-health-services field, Hathaway-Sycamores is licensed by the California Department of Social Services, certified by the Los Angeles Department of Mental Health, and accredited through The Joint Commission.
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