Through an extraordinary public-private partnership, Orangewood
Children's Foundation raised the money to build the Orangewood
Children's Home and donated it back to the County upon completion
in 1985. Located in Orange, California, the Orangewood Children's
Home is Orange County's only emergency shelter for neglected
and sexually, physically or emotionally abused children. The
Home provides refuge each year for over 1,000 children who have
been removed from their caretakers by police officers or child
protective services workers and placed into protective custody.
In the Fall of 2010, Orange County Social Services Agency changed
the name of Orangewood Children’s Home to “Orangewood
Children & Family Center”. This reflects the facility’s
expanded mission of serving both children and their families.
A recent shift in the child welfare system has resulted in increased
focus on keeping children with their families and relatives,
but only if this can be done safely. The shift has reduced Orangewood's
daily population; although well over 1,400 children are still
admitted annually. The Center continues to provide children
with emergency shelter in cottages that house children and teens
ranging in age from newborn to 18 years, plus an on-site K-12
school and preschool, medical facilities and recreational facilities
including a pool, basketball courts, softball field and game
However, the 10-acre campus is now being used for broader purposes.
The Child Abuse Services Team (CAST) is now on-site and continues
with its mission of conducting child abuse investigations at
a single site, enabling children to avoid being re-victimized
by having to tell their story of sexual abuse and neglect multiple
times. A Family Visitation Center, which allows parents to visit
their children after court hearings, is also now on-site. In
the Spring of 2011 Early Start and Head Start programs will
be offered to provide a full day of early childhood education
for approximately 40 children from infancy to age 5 who are
residing in foster care or with relatives.
Bill Steiner, founding director of the facility, said, "Orangewood
has evolved into a cutting-edge multiservice center. Its proactive
response to changing conditions secures its future as one of
the most valuable resources in Orange County and one that will
continue to work to break the cycle of abuse and neglect for
children in need."
here to read Bill's entire op-ed piece that appeared in the
Orange County Register.
Ongoing special projects funded by Orangewood Children's Foundation
help to keep facilities in peak operating condition. The Foundation
continues to support the Orangewood Children & Family Center
and its young occupants, providing a wide range of programs,
activities, equipment, supplies, and necessities for the children
who reside there.
Here for the most recent Orangewood Children & Family
Center fact sheet.