LOS ANGELES, Calif.–Looking back two decades, Betsy Pfromm recalls her first days on Vermont Avenue in Exposition Park running Los Angeles Child Guidance Clinic: “The civil unrest of the early 90s put a spotlight on crushing needs in South L.A. Fortunately, the Clinic was in great position to rally support from philanthropy and launch a model facility in the heart of the unrest–and in doing so, created new hope for local children and youth.”

In 1994, the Clinic celebrated the grand opening of the Harriet and Charles Luckman Building near the corner of Exposition and Vermont, and launched a spectrum of services that focus on onsite mental health outpatient services.

“The facility and its services have been a huge success,” says Pfromm. Indeed, over 1,200 children and youth annually cross the threshold at 3787 S. Vermont for assessment at the Clinic’s Access Center–a no-appointment, no-fee program open from 8:00 a.m. to noon five days a week. Typical needs include treatment for trauma that results from domestic violence, neglect, or abuse.

Through the center, the Clinic opens cases as needed and provides linkages to community resources.

“Our team of behavioral health professionals are focused on getting our clients on track to success–to reach goals in school, build healthy relationships, and enjoy emotional well-being,” says Pfromm.

The Clinic is now working to ensure its flagship facility adapts to meet emerging needs. “Heavy foot traffic takes its toll, but so do changes in community need,” says Steve Talavera, vice president of administration and finance. His team designed a series of renovations to key access points to accommodate new needs. “Our goal has been to improve safety and increase client access and service quality.” With generous support from the S. Mark Taper Foundation, the Weingart Foundation and the Ahmanson Foundation, key improvements include refitting and upgrading meeting and kitchen facilities that host community trainings.

“We host a Family FunFest every year that not only provides mental health outreach and screenings, but also feeds up to 1,000 local residents, which our new kitchen will better accommodate,” says Clinic CEO Pfromm. “Our Early Intervention Training Institute creates dedicated access in South L.A. to specialized training for providers and others working with vulnerable children ages 0 to 5.” The institute’s trainings are designed to enhance knowledge of infant/early childhood development and build competency in addressing emotional and behavioral challenges.

“We’re deeply grateful to our partners in philanthropy for their investment in our community’s success,” says Pfromm. “Thanks to their support, we look forward to at least another twenty years of hope and success for our children, youth and families.”

For more information about Los Angeles Child Guidance Clinic visit their website at http://www.lachild.org