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Edgewood's Residential Program Saved

June 24, 2008

Edgewood Center for Children and Families (Edgewood) today announced that its short-term residential program serving severely abused, neglected, and mentally ill children will remain open to San Francisco kids thanks to the City of San Francisco and a heroic response by the community.

  Edgewood Medical Director Dr. Robin Randall. See pictures from our Thank You rally at San Francisco City Hall more...

Faced with a severe deficit in its residential program, Edgewood's Board announced the historic agency would be forced to discharge and stop admission of children from San Francisco County on June 30 unless the City approved an additional $661,000 in funding to cover the actual costs of providing intensive psychiatric treatment.

Media coverage of the funding crisis generated a groundswell of grassroots support for Edgewood. Hundreds of Bay Area citizens contacted the Mayor and their Supervisor to urge officials to save the program. In response, the City approved roughly $330,000 in additional funds for the program and suspended additional cuts.

Individuals and organizations in the community also came through with additional support to keep Edgewood's residential treatment cottages open to San Francisco children. Edgewood immediately received $60,000 in donations from individuals through the mail and Local community based dance institution ODC came up with an innovative solution to close the funding gap for Edgewood's residential program: create a special performance of its holiday show, The Velveteen Rabbit, benefiting Edgewood. The special performance of The Velveteen Rabbit has the potential to raise up to $100,000.

"The Mayor faced very difficult decisions about where to cut in this year's budget," said Nancy Rubin, President and CEO of Edgewood. "That is why we are so appreciative of Mayor Newsom, Supervisor Maxwell, and Supervisors Chu, Peskin, Dufty, Ammiano, and Alioto-Pier for their efforts on Edgewood's behalf and their commitment to the children we serve in our residential treatment program. We are also incredibly moved by the support we received from private individuals and ODC whose added support made it possible to keep the program running."

"I'm thrilled we were able to find a funding solution for children in San Francisco who so desperately need the services organizations like Edgewood provide," said District 10 Supervisor Sophie Maxwell. "This is a perfect example of how when government and the community work together to solve problems, good things happen."

"ODC is thrilled to be able to step up and help Edgewood at such a difficult time," said ODC Founder and Artistic Director Brenda Way. "This gesture embodies the collaborative spirit of ODC and reflects the typical generosity of our San Francisco community."

In addition to funding secured for its residential treatment program, Edgewood's budget calls on the agency to raise $3.25 million in private donations next year. Edgewood historically depends on significant private funding to operate a broad range of exceptional services helping children and families in Bay Area neighborhoods and schools.

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About Edgewood

Edgewood Center for Children and Families (Edgewood) helps children and families take back their future by working with them to overcome severe challenges like abuse, neglect, mental illness, and family crisis. The oldest children's charity in the western U.S., Edgewood has evolved to meet the community's changing needs. What began as a refuge for Gold Rush orphans more than 150 years ago is now a nationally recognized, multifaceted agency. Edgewood serves more than 5,000 children and families in the Bay Area each year through community and residential programs.