Our Mission

CHILD, Inc.’s mission is to be the leading advocate for Delaware’s children. We provide creative prevention and treatment programs that meet the changing needs of families. We serve dependent, neglected and abused children and their parents. We provide programs for those involved in domestic violence situations, especially children. By protecting the victims and treating those responsible for acts of domestic violence we help children heal.

History

Since 1963, CHILD, Inc. has been helping the children and families of Delaware. The organization was originally incorporated in 1963 as the Boys Home, but in 1973 became CHILD, Inc. as the organization expanded its focus from serving neglected, dependent and abused boys in a group home setting to providing services for the entire family. As CHILD, Inc. endeavored to treat the entire family, the agency quickly learned that in many of these families there were high incidences of domestic violence. Since services for victims of domestic violence were non-existent during the mid-seventies, CHILD, Inc. began developing programming for these families.

Today CHILD, Inc. provides a comprehensive array of programs for children and families. These programs include counseling services for children and families, foster care homes, Delaware’s only shelter for abused and neglected children, parent education, two shelters for battered women and their children, advocacy for domestic violence victims, a domestic violence hotline and a family visitation center. In addition, for the last twenty years CHILD, Inc. has been providing a resource center in the economically deprived community of Sparrow Run. In 2014, CHILD, Inc. expanded its commitment to the families of Sparrow Run by opening a safe haven for children which we call the Kids Place. The Kids Place is a stable environment where children can meet after school, under the supervision and guidance of CHILD, Inc. staff to work on homework, participate in recreational and cultural enrichment activities and just be kids.

The Founders of CHILD, Inc.

Martha Verge duPont, rescued a struggling group home for boys and through decades of determination and vision it grew into the comprehensive social services agency we now know as CHILD, Inc. Mrs. duPont’s lifelong commitment to children in crisis was a driving force and guiding light for nearly 50 years. A fierce defender of children, Mrs. duPont advocated for statewide reforms, dramatically changing the child welfare system in Delaware. She served as President of the Board of Directors of CHILD, Inc. until her passing in August 2017.

Henry E. I. duPont, working side by side with his wife, Martha; Henry founded, financially supported and guided CHILD, Inc. during the agency’s early years. Without his support CHILD, Inc. would have not grown into the agency which today provides essential services to thousands of people each year. Henry passed away in 2002 leaving a legacy of service which will continue for generations.

Joseph M. Dell’Olio, served as the Executive Vice President of CHILD, Inc. from 1973 to 2008. Under Joe’s leadership CHILD, Inc. grew to become a leading provider of services to children and families in Delaware. At the same time Joe led major efforts to reform Delaware policies to better benefit children and youth. He was a driving force in the creation of the Department of Services to Children, Youth and Their Families. Today, Joe continues his commitment to CHILD, Inc. through serving as a member of the Board of Directors.

Donald E. Pease, Esq. served CHILD, Inc. as a volunteer from the agency’s founding until his death in 2004. During all of those years Don was an invaluable board member and served as Board Treasurer. He provided legal guidance and helped establish CHILD, Inc. as a highly respected and important part of the community.

Board of Directors

  • Lisa Lewis Chairman and President
  • Michael T. French Vice President & Treasurer
  • Ericka Hynansky Secretary
  • Joseph M. Dell’Olio
  • Dina du Pont
  • Clifton Hayes
  • Melanie George Smith
  • Phyllis Ventresca