Children's Home Society of California (CHS) was founded in 1891 by Dr. J.R. Townsend and his wife in order to assist abandoned and homeless children in the Los Angeles area. After obtaining a charter granting them permission to place "homeless children in childless homes" the Townsends went on to incorporate in Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Santa Clara counties. By 1892 Children's Home Society of California had expanded into the Bay Area.
With little or no legislation outlining the fate of homeless children into the early 1900's, children shut away in poorhouses and orphanages. New state legislation was enacted in 1911, with Children's Home Society granted the first permit to place children.
Children's Home Society of California was a founding member of the Child Welfare League of America (CWLA) and the organization was extremely influential in the establishment of public, county adoption agencies in 1947.
By the 1960's, Children's Home Society "was the largest private adoption agency in the world."
180 Grand Avenue, Suite 1030, Oakland, California 94612
- Children's Home Society of California: Our History official website
This organization is listed in the Youth Services Directory.