The Settlement Home for Children

Organizational Overview

The Settlement Home for Children
1600 Payton Gin Road
Austin, Texas 78758

Mission Statement

Our mission is to promote healing and growth in children, young adults, and families, by providing a continuum of care, support, and resources. We serve individuals who have experienced severe emotional trauma, abuse and neglect.

In 1916, twelve women recognized a need in the community and established a day nursery for children. During these challenging times, some mothers relied on The Settlement Home to help raise their children. So began our journey to becoming an established, well-run, safe facility for children. Throughout the years we've grown and evolved to serve the needs of children and families in the Austin community and across the state.

At The Settlement Home, we provide a continuum of care, support and resources. As residents complete their goals for treatment, they have the opportunity to move to one of the other programs within our community. This tangible next step motivates residents to complete their treatment goals and allows them to move in either direction in the continuum based on their needs. This environment creates stability so that residents do not have to move to another agency if their treatment goals change. With each step through the continuum, the safety and therapeutic needs of residents are considered, allowing them to expand their reach for tools and resources.

Impact Statement

Our Residential Programs serve girls in need of 24-hour supervised care to ensure safety and a sense of security. Our primary referral source is Child Protective Services (CPS), which is part of Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (TDFPS). The youth that we serve have a history of abuse, neglect and severe emotional trauma and are in need of healing. Each cottage is agency-staffed and run by a licensed therapist who provides individual, group and family therapy, as well as treatment planning and consultation. Aside from therapeutic services, some residents also learn and practice skills to promote independence to prepare for adulthood. Other residents are working toward moving into a family setting, which could be biological family, a foster family or an adoptive family. While our license allows us to serve girls as young as the age of 7, typically our residents range in age from 12-18 years old.

Our Transitional Living Program serves young women between the ages of 18 and 21 who are in extended foster care working to be self-sufficient. Twelve furnished efficiency apartments house one youth each and include utilities and basic cable/internet service. These residents have earned a high school diploma or GED. To be eligible, residents must be employed or enrolled in post-secondary education. The primary focus of the program is to allow residents the opportunities to learn basic independent skills, including financial literacy, job readiness and culinary endeavors. Residents meet regularly with a therapist who helps them set goals toward independence and provide after care services.

Our Foster and Adoption Program works with Child Protective Services (CPS) case workers, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), attorneys and families to provide either a temporary or permanent stable home for children who can no longer remain in the care of biological family. The goal of the program is to be the last place a child lives before achieving what CPS calls "permanence," which includes reunification with family, kinship placement or adoption. We aim to provide safety, stability and well-being for children in foster care. We support both foster and adoptive families as they provide children with a sense of belonging and connection to the larger world.

Needs Statement

$25 buys a coat for one child
$50 helps with immediate needs for an emergency placement
$75 pays for a bus ticket for a child to visit her family
$150 pays for a holiday meal for 2 foster families
$250 pays for warm blankets for a cottage of 9 children
$500 pays for activities for three cottages during the winter break
$1,000 buys a pair of shoes for all children in residential treatment
$2,500 pays for therapy for 4 children every week for 6 months
$5,000 covers the cost of utilities for 5 months for a cottage
$10,000 feeds a cottage for 3 months

"I learned that I am a strong, confident person and that I can do anything I put my mind to."- former resident, current transitional living resident

"My therapist helped me realize that everything is not my fault." - former resident

"It is my honor to be able to help these children in need who otherwise have little hope. The Settlement Home for Children has been helping children for 100 years." - Settlement Club member
Our volunteer program was designed to provide flexibility for every volunteer.
We believe that the most powerful influence in our lives is our relationship with others. It is through these relationships that we hope to motivate our children to become loving, responsible adults. Volunteers play an integral part in serving as role models to the children that live here. There are many opportunities within our program to make these connections. Together we can make a difference in our children's lives.
Each of our volunteers comes from a unique background and has amazing skills and talents. If you have a particular skill or talent you would like to share, we can create a customized volunteer experience for you. We appreciate you and want to help you give back. We're here to help you make a difference.

Individual Mentors - Individual mentors build a corrective, therapeutic relationship with one child for a one year commitment. Mentors must be available 6-8 hours per month during evenings and weekends.

Cottage Volunteers - Cottage volunteers work under the supervision of the cottage supervisor and staff on one of our cottages to provide assistance to residents, assist with leading recreation or daily routine activities.

School Volunteers - Work under the supervision of the teachers and education staff in our on campus school to provide assistance to designated students; Help provide encouragement and positive reinforcement to students struggling to be successful in the classroom; Help promote a positive learning environment by focusing on academic tasks and designated student goals.

Recreational Volunteer - Lead a recreation or health & fitness class; teach music lessons; or teach a summer recreation class.

We also have volunteer opportunities for groups!