Join Walden on Thursday, July 28, 3:00-5:00 p.m., for an open house to celebrate 40 years of preparing foster children and youth to thrive. Guests will meet children and families served by the agency, and learn how social workers and local leaders support Walden’s vision of preparing every child to reach their full potential. This free community event will be held at Walden’s San Diego office located at 8525 Gibbs Drive, Suite 100.
Established in 1976, Walden took its inspiration from Walden Pond author Henry David Thoreau when the agency began operating residential group homes focused on preparing foster youth to become self-sufficient productive members of society. By 1983, Walden had recognized that children’s healthy development depended on positive relationships with family and community and began specializing in placing children in foster families as an alternative to group homes. In 2015, Walden helped more than 1,500 children, youth and families heal from trauma and build lasting relationships.
“We consistently see kids start to thrive once they feel safe and secure with family members and caregivers who reinforce their natural interests and abilities,” said CEO Teresa Stivers. Walden has become a recognized leader in training foster and adoptive families to care for infants, sibling groups and children with developmental disabilities, behavioral challenges and special healthcare needs.
In 2002, Walden responded to growing concerns that youth exiting foster care at age 18 struggled to succeed by launching the Independent Futures program. Youth in the program learned how to communicate effectively, develop healthy relationships and make positive decisions – skills most youth learn from family. The program has since evolved, and Walden is now the fourth largest provider of a transitional housing plus foster care program that enables youth to remain in care to pursue their education or steady employment.
Walden holds accreditation from CARF International, and has been recognized by Human Rights Campaign Foundation – All Children, All Families Campaign and Live Well San Diego.
To RSVP for the open house, register online or call Bettina Rausa, Development and Special Events Manager, at 619-727-5887.