Family & Children’s Service
1885 to the Present
Family & Children’s Service has been serving the residents of Greater Lynn and surrounding communities since 1885, and its history provides a window into the evolution of social services over the past 132 years.
- Our Day Nursery of the 1880’s gave way to the beginnings of family day care services in the early 20th century. Family day care has since become a private enterprise, run primarily by women entrepreneurs in the community, and F&CS supports them with opportunities for professional development and access to quality resources and facilities that supplement what they can provide to the children in their care.
- Our penny lunch program for immigrant children, begun in 1913, became a Lynn School lunch program in 1922.
- A Baby Clinic launched in 1913 to treat sick children evolved to dispensing preventive advice about feeding and hygiene for well babies. Today, teachers and family advocates in the Family Resource Center teach parents how to nurture their children's cognitive, social and emotional development.
- The Lynn Home for Children cared for “destitute children” until 1924 when services were developed that worked to preserve families whenever possible. Counseling for individual children and their parents has expanded to include parent education and support groups as well as activity groups for children and adolescents. Services previously available only in "the clinic" are now also delivered in more accessible, diverse community locations, such as the schools, homeless shelters, Head Start and public housing.
Today, F&CS offers a broad base of child and family-oriented social services in Chelsea, Charlestown, East Boston, Lynn, Revere and Winthrop, with a particular focus on partnering with the schools as well as other agencies to address the complex issues facing our constituents. We emphasize community-based, preventive, capacity building services that honor and expand upon the strengths of our clients.