Press | March 12, 2013

Children’s Aid Society Opens New Center in Bronx to Serve Medical, Dental and Mental Health Needs of 4,000 Youth

By Jennifer H. Cunningham

NY Daily News


The Children’s Aid Society will unveil its new Bronx headquarters on Wednesday – a state of the art community health center.


The $13.5 million, 40,000- square-foot facility just south of Crotona Park at 910 E. 172nd St., will address children’s medical, dental and psychological needs.


“One thing that the space also offers us is the ability to provide real, coordinated services for our most vulnerable children,” Children’s Aid Society president and CEO Richard Buery said.


“To have them all under one roof allows for better coordination, communications and collaboration among those professionals.”


For example, a child who comes in with a toothache but also has an undiagnosed mental health issue could have both treated at the center, Buery said.


“There’s a real power in having all these folks on a team working under one roof,” he said.


The community health center will serve about 4,000 Bronx youth annually – about 400 in foster care run by the Children’s Aid Society – and double the group’s capacity for providing care to Bronx children.


The new HQ boasts a teen-only waiting room and electronic patient health records.


Michael Wagner, director of permanency for the Children’s Aid Society’s adoption and foster care program, said children in foster care will especially benefit from the new center.


The site will also house a medical foster care program for kids with disabilities or chronic illnesses whose parents aren’t able to take care of them.  The program, created in the 1980s to care for babies born to crack-addled moms, places sick and disabled children in foster homes.


The nonprofit, which advocates and supports New York City children has about a dozen other sites in the Bronx, including a teen center, early childhood education programs and a recently-opened charter school.


“We really want to be in the business of helping to create true pathways for stable outcomes,” Buery said.