Supporting Kidds

The Center for Grieving Children and Their Families


Founded in 1989 as a small grassroots, volunteer organization, Supporting Kidds was one of the first children’s grief centers in the country.  Since then, we have provided hope and healing to over 4,200 grieving children and families.  In addition, we have trained 660 volunteer facilitators; provided community grief education workshops to 5,000 community members, schools, nurses, hospitals and crisis teams; developed and distributed 1,500 Survival Kits to schools and families; and responded to over 13,000 requests for telephone assistance.

Here is a brief outline of significant events in our history:

1989 The dream of offering children a safe place to express intense feelings related to grief is realized through the establishment of Supporting Kidds, Inc. a non-profit organization dedicated to grieving children and families.
1993 Supporting Kidds becomes an Affiliate Agency of the United Way of Delaware by meeting rigorous management and operational standards.
1998 The Board of Directors and Staff begin the process of developing a three-year Strategic Plan.  The resulting plan includes a new mission and vision statement, as well as strategic objectives for the years 1999-2002.
1999 Supporting Kidds is the recipient of a generous gift from the Children’s Charity Golf Tournament.  The funds are invested for future growth and eventual establishment of a new facility.  Services are expanded and include distribution of Family Survival Kits and development of a new program to address the ongoing needs of grieving families.
2001 Supporting Kidds initiates a capital campaign feasibility study to evaluate current facility use and options for expansion.
2002 Supporting Kidds refocuses agency mission, philosophy and vision with plans to lead the community in addressing the specific needs of bereaved children, their families and the larger community in which they live.  A new fundraising model is successfully implemented.  A total of $300,000 in pledges to 2007 is raised.
2003 With a grant from Judi Marvel Charities, a School Survival Kit addressing loss in the school setting is developed and will be given to every school in the state of Delaware.
2004 A sales contract is signed and successful capital campaign is launched for a “Home for Kidds” Offices are moved to our new temporary location at Emmanuel Church Highlands.
2005 Supporting Kidds purchases 1213 Old Lancaster Pike and renovations begin.  A new Guiding Pathways Therapy program is initiated in the Fall in collaboration with Widener University.
2006 With approximately $650,000 raised in capital funding, Supporting Kidds moves to new facility in June.
2007 A full complement of programs and services are offered at the center.  Assessment, consultation and therapy services are expanded and our first Kidds Kamp is offered.  More than $800,000 is raised towards our one-million dollar campaign goal.
2008 With grants from the Fund for Women and the Robin Foundation, a psycho-educational support program for high-risk teenage girls, Girl Power is offered in collaboration with the Adolescent Mental Health Center at Wilmington Hospital.
2009 Supporting Kidds celebrates 20 years of services to grieving children and their families.  A series of articles titled "Lost and Found" is published in the Community News.
2010 Supporting Kidds partners with the Delaware Division of Prevention and Behavioral Health Services to provide therapy to two groups in the Colonial School District in Delaware.
2011 Winner of the Governor’s Outstanding Volunteer Award for a health agency.  Funding from AstraZeneca allowed us to expand our community-based therapy services in the Colonial School District.  Funding from the Longwood Foundation enabled us to distribute our School Survival Kit to every school in Delaware and offer personal follow-up consultations continuing into 2012.  
2012 A New York Life Foundation grant, through the National Alliance of Grieving Children, is allowing us to translate all of our materials into Spanish and to begin outreach to the Hispanic community.  
2013 A significant grant from Highmark Blue Cross is enabling us to increase our clinical capacity and implement an electronic health record/billing system. Generous funding from the Chichester duPont Foundation and the Laffey-McHugh Foundation will allow us to provide mental-health therapy groups in 3 selected schools in the 2013/2014 and 2014/2015 school years.
2015 Supporting Kidds becomes a subsidiary of Children & Families First.

Supporting Kidds receives a grant for school-based trauma groups .

Coming in 2017!

Healing Pathways support groups expand statewide!

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