Children’s Services of Roxbury was founded in 1972 by community and church leaders who recognized that too many families and children of every race, ethnic and linguistic background find themselves trapped in systems which they do not trust, and therefore cannot use effectively to meet their needs. CSR places the family at the center of the system, building a network of professional and community supports that can nurture trusting relationships, communicate respect, and teach the skills of empowerment.
Serving a broad spectrum of communities, Children’s Services of Roxbury’s programs and services enhance and enrich our communities and help to bring together diverse people and groups. Currently, 75% of CSR’s clients are racial, ethnic, cultural and/or linguistic minority groups that include African, African American, Latino, Cape Verdean, Haitian and Asian.
Traditionally, CSR has worked almost exclusively with constituents living in the historically minority neighborhoods of Boston, including Roxbury, Dorchester, Jamaica Plain, Hyde Park and Mattapan. However, in the past ten years, CSR’s services have expanded to reach a diverse mix of families beyond Greater Boston, expanding to Western Massachusetts, the Northeast, and Greater Worcester. All are welcome.
The significant issues community residents are facing are often the deep-rooted conditions of poverty, such as unemployment and underemployment, serious chronic health problems, lack of affordable and accessible housing, access to safe, quality and affordable childcare, higher-than-average pregnancy rates and premature birth rates, and implicit bias.
Additional personal challenges that are unique to each family include substance abuse, single parenting, lack of education and job-related skills, illiteracy, welfare reform related issues, and work/family conflicts. CSR addresses the most basic needs for food, shelter, safety, and family support.
CSR is about nurturing. It’s about growth. It’s about healing. It’s about community.
Regardless of how or why a family walks through our doors – regardless of which program they choose – CSR affords our participants a measure of peace of mind; enough for families to catch their breath, change their prospective so they can reconnect with their resilience, strength and hope for a better future.
For example, when a parent leaves their child in our daycare so they can go to work or school, we take pride in their peace of mind.
When a child is placed in a loving foster home, often the first time in their life they have felt truly safe, we take pride in their peace of mind.
When a child recovers from trauma and can build new trusting relationships, we take pride in their peace of mind.
When a family receives shelter, less burdened by the weight of homelessness, we take pride in their peace of mind.
That is what it’s about. CSR believes in a world where there is power in helping others. CSR believes in a world where there is power in helping ourselves.