The Beginning… The need for a private family service agency in the Greater Baton Rouge area was documented by a number of studies from 1950 through 1955. Under the auspices of the Family Court Advisory Committee, a steering committee of community leaders was appointed in March 1955. In a community-wide meeting held in April 1955, more than 200 citizens unanimously voted to establish a family service agency and elected a Board of Directors. In February 1956, a financial campaign raised over $25,000 and the first Executive Director of Family Service of Greater Baton Rouge was hired.
Getting Started… In 1957 the Junior League agreed to provide the salary of a part-time clinical social worker who saw 27 parents, 5 children, and 16 adolescents that year. The reception area of the office included the front seat of a used car where families waited to be seen! Later that year the agency was approved as a member of the United Givers Fund now known as Capital Area United Way. The partnership with United Way has been a stable source of funding for services to children, adolescents, and families through the years.
Continuing to Expand, Expand and Expand… Issues of teen pregnancy, separation/divorce, school failure, child abuse/neglect, HIV/AIDS, depression, inadequate parenting skills, financial stress, and related family issues, often have negative, long lasting and devastating results in families. To address these issues and more, Family Service of Greater Baton Rouge has developed a range of services from prevention and education to secondary and tertiary interventions through case management and clinical modalities and methodologies. These include: The Child & Family Counseling Center (started in 1956) The Parenting Center (started in 1983) The HIV Prevention Program (started in 1997) The HIV Care Coordination and HIV Women & Children Programs (started in 1997) The Ways to Work Family Loan Program (started in 1999) ETV - Education and Training Vouchers (started in 2003) The AdoptUSKids Program (started in 2004) Family Preservation (started in 2007)
Today... The staff at Family Service consists of 22 individuals. The agency built a second builing in 2005 to house several programs including the Parenting Center, the Child & Family Counseling Center. Our most sincere thanks to those who generously contributed to our Capital Campaign, and without whom, our expansion would not have been possible. The agency budget for services has grown from $25,349 in 1955 to over $3,000,000.