Clients / Services

What is The Children’s Center?

The Children’s Center is home to many specialized clinical services. We lead the way in working with children who struggle with behavioral, emotional, educational, intellectual and developmental challenges or may have experienced trauma.

We treat the whole child, looking at more than a single issue so we can provide the best, most comprehensive integrated care. We examine barriers in the home, school and community, working with the family who raises them and the organizations that support them.

A champion for our children

Our vision reflects our community’s changing needs for providing care and our evolving position as a leading authority on children’s mental and behavioral health: To champion the never-ending quest for providing the best care, helping children learn to self-advocate once they’re outside the comfort of our walls, and get them on the road to a happier, more fulfilling childhood.

We provide best practice and evidence-based care to guide diagnosis and treatment, and help families overcome their struggles.

How many Programs and Services does The Children’s Center offer?

The Children’s Center is proud to offer a continuum of more than 26 services divided into 4 categories: 1) Healthy Start, 2) Healing the Hurt 3) Safe Home, and 4) Bridging the Gap

You can learn more by visiting the What We Do section of this website.

My child is having behavior problems and acting out in school, can you help?

The first step in obtaining help for your child is contact to our ACCESS Call Center at 313.262.1212.

How long has The Children’s Center been in existence?

The doors of The Children’s Center have been open since 1929. Our mission is to “Help children and families shape their own futures.”

How is The Children's Center different from other agencies?

We’re passionate about healing Detroit’s most vulnerable children and youth. Through our team of clinicians, social workers and educators, we help children and families overcome behavioral, emotional, educational and physical challenges so they can heal, grow and thrive. We also collaborate with local child-serving organizations and our community to help families get the services they need, when they need them most.

We offer a full array of services that tackle the health, behavior and social issues critical to a child’s success.

We’re not only excellent care providers, but also work with State policy and law-makers to advocate for critical issues affecting the children and families we serve.

We’re constantly expanding our services to meet our families’ needs. In the last few years alone, we’ve opened a crisis center, expanded our autism services, and launched a successful Head Start program.

Where are you located?

Main Campus

The Children’s Center main campus is located in Midtown at 79 West Alexandrine Detroit, Michigan 48201.

Autism Center

Our Autism Center is located in Midtown at 101 East Alexandrine, Detroit, MI 48201.

Head Start Academy

19900 Evergreen, Detroit, MI 48219.

How do I become eligible for services?

There are 3 different ways in which you can access services at The Children’s Center.

  1. If you are a pregnant person or a caretaker for a child 6 years or younger, you may call our Intake line directly at 313.262.1212 to complete a screening for our Early Childhood Behavioral Health Services. The person receiving services must have Medicaid insurance.
  2. If a child is covered under a private insurance policy, you may call our Intake line directly at 313.262.1212 to schedule an appointment. Child must be under the age of 18.
  3. If a child 7 years or older with Medicaid insurance has participated in Community Mental Health Services in the past and is still enrolled with Detroit Wayne Community Mental Health Network, you may call our Intake like directly to schedule an appointment. If you are interested in starting services for a child for the first time or the child has been disenrolled from Detroit Wayne Integrated Health Network, you must call the Wayne County Access Center for screening and eligibility determination.  If you are unsure whether or not the child is enrolled with Detroit Wayne Integrated Health Network, you can call our intake line or their Access Center to find out.

All individuals interested in an evaluation for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) services must call the Detroit Wayne Integrated Health Network for screening and determination. The Wayne County Access Center telephone number is 1.800.241.4949, open 24 hours.

Our Intake Department telephone number is 313.262.1212. Our office hours are 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.


What types of insurance plans do you accept?

The Children’s Center participates in several plans. To learn more, call us at 313.262.1212.

What is The Children’s Center doing to maintain health and safety during the COVID pandemic?

As a focus on health and safety, we are continuing to provide Telehealth Services. If you must visit our camp you see fewer staff coming and going. Our lobbies will look a bit different. We have moved chairs to allow for social distancing, added some barriers for separation, increased hand sanitizer throughout the building and other enhancements to keep our buildings safe and sanitized.

Preparing to Visit Our Campus


  • Hand washing is the most important factor in preventing the spread of germs and viruses.
  • Wash your hands often!
  • When coughing or sneezing, use your elbow to cover your mouth.

As a continued effort to protect our clients and staff, everyone visiting our campus must:

  • Wear a mask (if 2 years or older) covering your mouth and your nose.
  • Answer health screening questions.
  • Have a temperature reading.
    • (If your temperature is above 100˚ you will not be allowed to enter our campus for your safety)
  • Maintain 6 feet of social distance.
  • If you are ill or sick call to reschedule your appointment.

If you are unable or refuse to comply with these requirements you will not be allowed to enter any of our buildings.

To reduce the number of interactions when visiting us, only the child and parent/guardian participating in the service for the day will be allowed to enter the building.

Foster Care / Child Welfare

What is Foster Care?

Foster care is a temporary living arrangement for abused, neglected, and dependent children who need a safe place to live when their parents or another relative cannot take care of them.

We help foster children succeed in school, fulfill key material needs, and participate in essential childhood experiences. Our services are tailored to help them graduate from high school with a plan for their future.

The Children’s Center also serves caregivers by providing educational and financial support to help them navigate the challenges and opportunities of fostering, to provide the best possible experience for the youth in their care.

Learn more about how you can #BEAFOSTERPARENT and change a child’s life.

How can I help a child in foster care?

By becoming a foster parent, you are helping a child have the chance to be reunited with his/her family and reduce the chance of further being harmed. You can provide these children with the love and attention they deserve while they are away from their birth parents.

Learn more about how you can #BEAFOSTERPARENT and change a child’s life.

Who are children in foster care?

Children in foster care are just like any other child you know with one difference—they have all suffered trauma and loss through no fault of their own. They have the same needs, dreams, and unique potential as all children, and seek the same opportunities that all children equally deserve to build a bright and promising future. Foster care is a temporary living arrangement for abused, neglected, and dependent children who need a safe place to live when their parents or another relative cannot take care of them.

What will I expect to do as a foster parent?

Foster parents act as caregiver to the child 24-hours a day. You will be responsible for providing food, shelter, clothing and nurturance to the child. You must allow the child various forms of recreation such as playing, going to the parks and other forms of social interaction. You are responsible for transporting your foster child to needed appointments, school, doctors and to the agency weekly for the child to visit with their birth parents. As a Foster Parent, you will be required to attend on-going training classes and participate in monthly home visits with your assigned caseworkers.

What kind of financial support would I receive?

Foster Parents are given a pre-determined reimbursement amount for the children they are caring for on a monthly basis. This amount depends on the needs of the child and should be used for the care of the child. This money would assist you in providing clothing and food for your foster children. In addition, you will also receive a clothing allowance for the child semi-annually.

Donors / Supporters

Is The Children’s Center a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization?

Yes. The Children’s Center has the 501(c)(3) designation of the Internal Revenue Code, therefore all monetary and in-kind donations are tax deductible.

Why does The Children’s Center need donations from the community?

Monetary support from the community allows The Children’s Center to meet the needs of children and families that exceed funding from public sources.

What types of donations does The Children’s Center accept?

The Children’s Center graciously accepts gifts of time, talents and treasures. Monetary gifts, new and gently used clothing, household items, school supplies and gifts of time through volunteerism are always in need.

Can I include The Children’s Center in my estate planning?

Yes. Please contact Cheryl Simon, Chief Philanthropy Officer, at 313.262.0930 or for more information.

Does The Children’s Center accept gifts of stock?

Yes. The Children’s Center accepts gifts of appreciated securities. You can learn more by visiting Gift of Stock or contacting Cheryl Simon, Chief Philanthropy Officer, 313.262.0930 or email

My company has a matching gifts program. Does The Children’s Center participate in matching programs?

To take advantage of this easy way to double or even triple your gift, just follow these steps: (1) Check with your employer to see if they are a matching gift company (2) Get a matching gift form from your human resources or payroll office (3) Mail your completed form with your gift to The Children’s Center, Resource Development Department,79 West Alexandrine, Detroit, MI 48201

Can I make an online donation to The Children’s Center with my credit card?

Yes. The Children’s Center accepts all major credit cards (Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express). We are a VeriSign registered secure site and can accept donations online. To donate via credit card, please click here or call Beth Martz at 313.481.5123 or email


How can I become a volunteer for The Children’s Center?

It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3. (1) All potential volunteers complete a volunteer application including authorization for a background check. (2) Complete a Department of Human Service (DHS) Clearance form. (3) Attend volunteer orientation and interview.

How old do I have to be to volunteer for The Children’s Center?

The minimum age to volunteer for The Children’s Center is 14 years old.

Why do I have to have a background check and Department of Human Service (DHS) Clearance?

The Children’s Center works diligently to ensure a safe environment for the children and families that entrust The Children’s Center with their care. Therefore all potential volunteer participate in the same screening process.

My employer allows staff to volunteer in the community. How can we get involved with The Children’s Center?

We offer a menu of opportunities for groups to volunteer. Please contact Adrienne Polumbo at or 313.979.1728 for more information.

Are there opportunities for my social organization to get involved with The Children’s Center?

Yes. We offer a menu of opportunities for groups to volunteer. Please contact Adrienne Polumbo at or 313.979.1728 for more information.