The Wheeling Florence Crittenton Home was established in 1895, when a group of concerned citizens invited Charles Crittenton to visit the city to advise them on the organization of their “rescue” efforts. After touring the city, which suffered a well-established reputation of vice, Crittenton made a donation for the founding of the Florence Crittenton Rescue Home–now known as Crittenton Services, Inc.
The history of the Florence Crittenton Agency, Inc. begins in 1896, when a group of community leaders in Knoxville, Tennessee established a home for young women in crisis. The original founders of the Florence Crittenton Agency modeled their program on the work of the Florence Crittenton Mission in Washington, D.C.
The Partnership for Families, Children and Adults has been serving the Tennessee Valley community for 140 years through professional counseling, crisis intervention, and prevention services. The Partnership began with the 1877 establishment of the Ladies Aid Society, which later became the Florence Crittenton Home. Under direction of United Way, The Florence Crittenton Service, Family Service Agency and Travelers Aid Society merged into Community Services of Greater Chattanooga, Inc. in 1973. In 1981, the agency assumed the name Family and Children’s Services of Chattanooga, Inc., and in 2003 became the Partnership for Families, Children and Adults.
In 1897, Charleston resident Claudia Tharin came across a newspaper article about the suicide attempt of a young, unmarried pregnant woman who had come to Charleston to give birth. Ms. Tharin was so touched by this young woman’s story that she, along with a group of Charleston women, established the Christ Love Mission, a network of altruistic volunteers who provided support and limited residential care in their own homes to single pregnant women and mothers in need. This revolutionary new movement was soon supported by Kate Waller Barrett, MD, one of the first female pediatricians in the United States. In 1899, Dr. Barrett invited Charles Crittenton to visit the Charleston program’s small office at 10 Washington Street. Mr. Crittenton made a financial contribution, and the agency name was changed to The Florence Crittenton Home and Hospital, now known as Florence Crittenton Programs of South Carolina.
In the late 1800s when Charles Crittenton was traveling across the Pacific coast, he instructed James R. Johnston, the superintendent of the New York mission, to engage the people of Philadelphia in the creation of a mission in that city. In 1892, Florence Crittenton Mission No. 7 was opened in Philadelphia. After many years of work under the name Florence Crittenton Service of Philadelphia, the organization merged with Youth Service, Inc. in 1981.
National Crittenton and the Crittenton Family of Agencies have known for more than a century that the obstacles faced by girls and young women are the result of acute and persistent exposure to chronic adversity, violence, and injustice. Our challenge was, and is, finding ways to effectively communicate to policymakers and funders the complexity of the barriers girls face and their root causes. In 2011, we discovered that the Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) survey results could play an important role in explaining the challenges girls face. Since then, we have used ACE research and brain science to communicate the lived experiences of trauma faced by girls and young women supported by the Crittenton Family of Agencies and other girl-serving organizations.
The Florence Crittenton Division of Perseus House first started in 1896 as The Door of Hope in Erie, Pennsylvania. A short year later, in 1897, The Door of Hope became a member of the Crittenton Family of Agencies. After operating as a standalone organization for many years, the Florence Crittenton Home of Erie became a division of Perseus House in 2001.
We have a long history as advocates for young women and girls
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