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Our History


IN 1976, THE PUBLIC AWARENESS AND CONVERSATION OF CHILD ABUSE WAS JUST THE BEGINNING.  Because of this impetus, The Children’s Place was founded in 1978, offering a multi-disciplinary day treatment program for survivors of abuse and neglect aged six weeks through six years of age. The Children’s Place has continued to expand services to address the needs of children and families within our community. Through the years, the mission of the agency has been steadfast: to promote positive mental health and developmental outcomes through prevention, treatment and family support for young children who have experienced abuse, neglect or other trauma. As is often stated, it takes a village to raise a child and we believe that it will take a village to help heal a child.

Check out our interactive timeline below to view key dates in our history.

A child is confirmed as abused or neglected every 36 seconds and dies from abuse or neglect every six hours. This is not an act of God, but our choice as men and women leaders and citizens. This can and must be changed.

Marian Wright-Edelman, President of the Children's Defense Fund

Explore The Children’s Place Timeline

Click on the dots below to learn more about how the Children’s Place came to be what it is today.

  • 1974The Junior League of Kansas City, Missouri establishes child abuse and neglect as a priority and begins research on the community’s child protection system.  Their research funds those services available for the treatment of abused children and their families are limited and that preventive and educational programs are virtually non-existent.
  • 1976Child Abuse Services Center is incorporated as a general not for profit corporation in Missouri.  The agency’s name changes to the Child Advocacy Services Center, Inc. two years later.
  • 1977Agency founders commit to the creation of a therapeutic nursery to be named The Children’s Place.
  • 1978The Day Treatment Services program of The Children’s Place opens its doors at 7110 Wyandotte with three classrooms to meet the needs of abused and neglected children.
  • 1986Outpatient Treatment Services is established, providing therapy to abused, neglected and otherwise traumatized children and their families on an outpatient basis.
  • 1987The Day Treatment Services program of The Children’s Place is recognized as the Best Model Program by the American Association for Protecting Children, as the first of five research articles on the effectiveness of programming at The Children’s Place appears in the International Journal of Child Abuse and Neglect.
  • 1989The Children’s Place moves to its current location, now offering five classrooms and successfully achieves accreditation by the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations.
  • 1991The Day Treatment Services program at The Children’s Place begins providing services to drug-exposed infants.
  • 1995The Angels of The Children’s Place Auxiliary is formed.  This fundraising auxiliary is dedicated to supporting the agency’s mission.
  • 1997Having provided parenting and education service throughout its history, The Children’s Place formalizes these efforts with the creation of the Parenting Support Services and Community Training Services program.
  • 1998The Parenting Support Services program of The Children’s Place begins providing training and assessments of prospective foster and adoptive parents for the Division of Family Services.
  • 2001The Children’s Place initiates a quarterly Child Abuse Roundtable Discussion, bringing together local legislators and child advocates to address the needs of abused and neglected children.  Day Treatment Services receives accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children.
  • 2002The Children’s Place joins the University of Missouri-Kansas City in the creation of the K.C. Metro Child Traumatic Stress Program, part of the National Child Traumatic Stress Network, aimed at improving access to and the quality of services available within the community to children who have experienced trauma.
  • 2003The Children’s Place celebrates 25 years of service to the community.
  • 2004The Children’s Place establishes a new strategic direction of Clinical Excellence.  Clinical staff was trained in three “best practices” of treatment with traumatized children identified by the National Child Traumatic Street Network through the Kauffman Foundation Best Practices Project.
  • 2005The Children’s Place is recognized as a Show-Me Solution by Governor Matt Blunt as part of his Show-Me Solutions Initiative highlighting outstanding work being done in communities across the heartland.
  • 2006Nationally recognized puppet-based program called Al’s Palsis introduced into the Day Treatment Program curriculum.  This resiliency-based program helps children 3 to 8 years of age develop personal, social and emotional skills.
  • 2008The Children’s Place celebrates 30 years of service to the community.
    The Kansas City Child Abuse Roundtable Coalition launches “Wear Blue Day” to raise awareness and show support for the fight against child abuse and neglect.
  • 2009The Children’s Place establishes two new partnerships: Carter Broadcasting Group – media sponsor and the National Association of the Remodeling Industry, Kansas City (NARI).  Both partnerships serve to increase the visibility of the agency and provided much needed plant improvements.
  • 2010Offers Play Therapy as a new modality for its day and outpatient treatment services program and establishes a Young Advisory Board of The Children’s Place.
  • 2011Pace for the Place benefit and FORE the Place Golf Tournament launched. Young Advisory Board hosts it’s first fundraiser. Back Snack Program for Day Treatment families is launched.
  • 2012Clinical staff present at 20th World Congress for the International Association for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Allied Professions in Paris, France highlighting comprehensive Day Treatment program.   The Children’s Place is named one of six national finalists for the Samuel E. Trout Premier Cares Award.
  • 2013The Angel Board successfully transitions the Angels’ Luncheon to the Angels’ Gala!  The Children’s Place is granted re-accreditation from the Joint Commission and successfully secures accreditation from the Better Business Bureau Charity Registry in Greater Kansas City.