Non-Profit Spotlight: Casa de los Niños

Playground Casa de los Ninos Tucson | Non-Profit Spotlight: Casa de los Niños

Casa de los Niños translates to "home for the children."

In the early 1970's, Sister Kathleen Clark was a nurse in the emergency room at St. Joseph's Hospital. Appalled at the victims of child abuse that she saw in her work, she resolved to open a safe haven for neglected and abused infants and toddlers. Through her determination and perseverance she founded and became the Executive Director of Casa de los Niños (one of the first crisis nurseries in the United States), where she served from 1973 until 1987. After her retirement, she continued to work at the home until she moved to Los Angeles in 1997.

The mission has stayed the same ever since: "Casa de los Niños promotes child well-being and family stability in our community."

With the support of community leaders, volunteers, and donors, Casa de los Niños seeks to build a society in which no child experiences the misery of abuse and neglect.


When and why did Casa de los Niños first open?

Casa de los Niños was founded in 1973 with an early vision to protect children from child abuse and neglect. Since then, Casa de los Niños has led the way in developing innovative programs of prevention and early intervention and a broad array of support services for children and families at risk of abuse, neglect, and crisis. Through behavioral and mental health treatment services, immediate crisis mediation, and child abuse prevention programs, children and families in our community can achieve stability and continue to thrive for years to come.

Yaritza Molina, Development and Public Relations for Casa de los Niños, explains, "It is our commitment to provide the highest quality resources to vulnerable child populations that drives our extensive program development, guided by a core vision to support children of all ages through trauma and challenging times, and to help parents create a healthy, stable home for their children. The dedication of over 230 employees helps over 10,000 children and families engage with the organization each year; last fiscal year composed of nearly 30,000 hours of mental health and in-home family support services and 343 free parenting classes taught throughout Pima County."

What is the mission of Casa de los Niños today?

Casa de los Niños promotes child well-being and family stability in our community.

Where is Casa de los Niños located?

Casa de los Niños is located on 1120 N 5th Ave. Since 2018, the organization has been able to combine all programs in one building to better assist the families they serve. 


Are volunteer opportunities available for adults, teens, and/or families?

Due to social distancing, there are currently no volunteer opportunities working directly with children.

Casa de los Niños is seeking interns who are pursuing a master’s degree. For more information regarding internship opportunities, please call 520-624-5600.

Does Casa de los Niños accept donations?

New donations are accepted year round and can be dropped of at 1120 N 5th Ave.

The current greatest need is for developmental toys for babies/toddlers, board games, summer clothing for all ages, back to school supplies, baby wipes, and gift cards to Target, Walmart, Frys, or Safeway.

The organization has an Amazon Wish List. It's an easy way for anyone to directly support a family in need by shopping online and then having the items shipped directly to Casa de los Niños.

Monetary gifts are accepted as well. Checks can be mailed directly or a gift can be made through the website.


What does a foster parent do?

Foster parents provide a stable, loving home to children who have experienced trauma and support the child's biological family to help them heal and grow.

How do I become a foster parent?

Casa de los Niños provides "the best experience for foster families and those seeking adoption certification by providing you with timely information, emotional support, and encouragement."

Basic requirements include:

  • Applicants must be 21 years of age or older.
  • Pass a criminal history background check
  • Earn sufficient income to meet your family's needs
  • Pass a home inspection
  • Complete 30 hours of pre-service training

If you think foster care may be a good fit for your family, call Casa de los Niños at 520-624-5600 for more information.


After 46 years in the Tucson community, Casa De Los Ninos permanently closed its thrift store in 2021.


Who can attend parenting classes at Casa de los Niños?

Parent education classes at Casa de los Niños are free and available to anyone looking for support and resources to be a great parent.

What classes are available?


  • Learn about child development for all ages and stages, babies to teenagers.
  • Discover and practice strategies to improve communication with your children.
  • Identify new, positive discipline techniques.
  • Acquire new strategies to help you deal with the stress and challenges of parenting.
  • Interact and engage with other parents.
  • Increase the quality of your interactions with your children.

Check the website for a full schedule.


Is Casa de los Niños on social media?

Casa de los Niños is active on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

You can also sign up to receive updates about events, volunteer opportunities, and pressing needs.

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