Our Mission is...

Children's Home of Stockton  430 N. Pilgrim Street, Stockton

To give at-risk youth an opportunity for a productive life through treatment and education in a safe nurturing environment.

Our Major Programs are...

Educational services in a K-12 non-public school setting and professional counseling in a Short-Term Residential Therapeautic Program (STRTP) setting addressing child and adolescent needs and problems, i.e. depression, bereavement, anxiety, child abuse, sexual abuse and sexual concerns, other interpersonal problems, individual adjustments, family problems, parent/child conflicts, mental illness, social, vocational and independent living skills and other individual and family needs.

Our Students are...

the children and their families throughout the state of California, whom we serve with all the resources of the organization, without regard to race, age, national origin, sex, religion, disability or any other protected characteristic.

Our History…

  • In 1882, a small group of ladies gathered and formed the Ladies Aide Society of Stockton for the purpose of “rendering charitable services to the City of Stockton.”  In fact, they recognized the need for a home to care for the neglected and dependent children of the community and that was their only focus.
  • In 1883, the Ladies Aid Society of Stockton accomplished their first major goal with the opening of a children’s home in a rented house located on South San Joaquin Street.
  • In 1901, the Home Sewing Circle was founded.  Comprised of eleven ladies from the community, they devoted themselves to raising funds for capital improvements for the home.  They sewed pot-holders, and aprons and other crafts and sold their efforts at an annual bazaar.  Their first sale at the bazaar was considered a happy success, having made $153.30.
  • In 1908, enough funds had been gathered by the Ladies Aid Society to buy the half city block opposite Constitution Square for $2,600.
  • The period of 1908 through 1912 was perhaps the biggest era in the history of the Home.  It was certainly the busiest.  The site was acquired, the building fund of $10,000 was augmented by a $20,000 bequest from a prominent civic leader, an architect was hired and the building completed.  When finished, the Home was expected to accommodate up to 100 children and included dormitories, an infirmary, kitchen, laundry and all the “modern” conveniences.  The two story and basement structure comprise 5700 square feet on each floor and continues to serve the Home today as its administrative office building.  (The building was named the “Mark S. Phelps Building” in early 2011 in recognition of a past Executive Director who served CHS from August 1985 until his untimely passing in June 2010.)
  • In 1940 the Children’s Home of Stockton received its license to operate as a children’s Home by the California Social Welfare Department.  Enrollment during this period was generally constant at twenty-five to thirty girls and the same for boys.  Community support continued, but, as today, was restricted by economic conditions.  Through it all, the Home was more important than ever and provided its greatest service to the children of the community during those hard times.
  • In 1943, during WWII, there were 59 children in residence.  Twenty had been assign by Probation, three by County Welfare, and the remaining children were “private boarding cases.”  Although the war was in full swing, there is no mention in the Board minutes of its existence.  Their efforts remained zeroed in on the operation of the Home and the care of the children.  Food was being rationed, so a Victory Garden was formed and through a 4-H club membership, the children grew enough produce to provide for all the needs of the Home.  Also in the summer of 1943, outside activities were restricted due to a polio epidemic.
  • By 1948, in the post-World War II era, the sources of new children coming to the Home had changed.  Now children were either assigned to the Home by county departments or were considered “boarders” place in the Home by their families, who were expected to pay.  Of course, charity cases continued, but the Home was no longer rescuing waifs in the sense of 1883.  The Home was serving the same children; they were just coming from new sources.
  • In 1967, the Board of Director adopted a new policy of only accepting children between the ages of 8 and 15 years of age.  By so doing, it was believed that more age-appropriate services could be rendered to the children.  But the Board deplored the lack of facilities to serve the needs of older teens and began plans to create an Annex for this specific population.
  • In 1969, the Board took an historical step by adding two men as directors.
  • In 1970, the goal of building the Annex to help older teens was realized through generous donations of money, time and materials from the community.  The same year saw the construction and opening of the swimming pool on campus and all but two of the children had become safe swimmers by summer’s end.
  • By 1975, the home was no longer an orphanage as it had been in 1883, but was now serving a population with emotional and behavioral challenges.  This change had led to the increased needs of staffing – from a single motherly matron to a ratio of one adult to every six children.  Staff skill levels and educational requirements had changed as well, becoming dominated by skilled professional social workers and clinicians.
  • In 1995, the Children’s Home entered its second era of change, with the start of a new building fund-raising campaign to raise one million dollars.  This new era was begun by a total commitment to make the Home as exemplary in this new age as it had been in the past.  The new facilities were built on the same parcel, behind the original building, with frontage on Lindsay Street.

Today Lindsay Street, between Airport Way and N. Pilgrim Street, has been incorporated into the campus of CHS in a park-like setting for use during family visits or for just sitting outside.  The campus also includes three cottages that house eight to ten children each in a home-like atmosphere; three separate, three-bedroom houses on the south side of the campus; and a transition home in the community just west of Pershing Avenue.  CHS also boasts a modern, up-to-date Special Education School, with the capability of educating children from kindergarten through the twelfth grade.