Mission: To promote the safety and well-being of children and families in crisis.
About the organization: Founded in 1888 as an orphanage, Five Acres today is one of the largest agencies in the six-county greater Los Angeles area dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect. The organization moved from downtown Los Angeles to its current facility in Altadena in 1921, expanded its mission to include children's well-being and mental health, opened the Five Acres Therapeutic School for severely emotionally disturbed children in 1957, and today also serves as a foster care and adoption agency.
Current programs: The organization's programs provide comprehensive psychological support services in home, school, community, and office settings, including individual and family therapy, parent/caregiver support, medication assessment and management, psychological testing, case management, and rehabilitation services. The organization's community-based specialty services include parent-child interaction therapy and services for the deaf and hard of hearing (with interpreters fluent in American Sign Language, English, and Spanish) struggling with depression, bullying, divorce, school tragedies, or other traumas. And the organization's Pasadena Mental Health Center offers individual and family therapy, case management, referrals, and parenting support, as well as domestic violence support groups, healthy relationship teen groups, and social skills groups.
In addition, the organization provides intensive services for children with the goal of lowering the risk of psychiatric hospitalization and the need for out-of-home congregate care placements and operates a short-term residential therapeutic program for boys and girls age 6 to 14 on its main campus in Altadena and for boys age 12 to 17 in a nearby group home where residents receive housing, meals, clothing, counseling and psychiatric treatment, therapeutic and educational services, case management, and 24/7 supervised care.
Five Acres' foster care and adoption services include "treatment foster care," which provides the tools needed to treat challenging mental, emotional, or behavioral needs, including clinical intervention, close supervision, and thirty additional training hours for foster families.
COVID-19 response: With the COVID-19 pandemic having caused a spike in unemployment, food insecurity, and mental health issues in the greater Los Angeles area, Five Acres has launched a HOPE line (800-696-6793 or HOPE@5acres.org) that individuals and families in crisis can turn to for emergency assistance.
Website: Visitors to the Five Acres site can learn more about the organization's programs, how to get help or access additional resources, and how to become a foster family. They also can learn more about supporting the organization and/or check out its podcast and blog.
Funding: Five Acres is supported by individuals, foundations, government agencies, and program services.