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Children & Families First is one of Delaware's oldest and most trusted non-profit leaders in providing the supports and services children and their families need to thrive.​


Using the collective strength of our varied professional backgrounds, we are a dynamic, inclusive collaborative of caring individuals who stand together driving positive change in our community by,​

  • Understanding the brain science research of how trauma impacts health, safety, and well-being,

  • Recognizing the prevalence and intergenerational impact of trauma in our communities, &

  • Working together building equitable, inclusive, trauma-informed systems of care.

Our Mission: Champion children & families using evidence-based, equity-centered, & innovative approaches.

Our Vision: Diverse, healthy, and resilient communities where all children and families thrive.


ADAPTABILITY: We implement program specific and organization-wide Quality Excellence processes to review effectiveness, manage outcomes, and make informed decisions.


INTEGRITY: Our Policy Agenda advocates for a just system where historically marginalized communities can access the tools, resources, and opportunities to reach their fullest potential.

COLLABORATION: We collaborate with research institutions and participate in community-based research to ensure our Service Approach is evidence-based, informed, and positively supports those we serve.

INCLUSION: Our Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee aligns all of our practices, policies, and procedures with a commitment to equitable access, representation, and respect. 

AUTHENTICITY: Our Brain Science Training Institute empowers individuals and groups to support persons affected by trauma through education on the individual and community implications of trauma.

COMPASSION: Our Programs are child-centered,  family focused, and respect that by listening and working alongside those we serve, every family has strengths to build upon.



In 1884, concerned members of our community came together to help meet the needs of their neighbors struggling with the lasting impacts of the Panic of 1873 economic crisis. Thus began a legacy of caring individuals, working together and dedicated to improving the lives of children and families. 


Through various mergers and expansions since then, Children & Families First has become a statewide organization, engaging more than 25,000 children, youth, and families each year steadfast in a commitment that makes us proud to say, our name is our promise.  

As we look to the future, we acknowledge our shared obligation to build a more equitable, diverse, and inclusive future for Children & Families First and for the communities we serve. We pursue bold change - using brain science research, listening to the voices of those we serve, and seeking intentional collaboration to innovate, advocate, transform systems, and continuously improve our practices.

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