May is National Mental Health Awareness Month – a time to focus on mental health and help reduce the stigma associated with seeking care. Mental health challenges can have a substantial impact on children’s educational, mental, social, and physical well-being, as well as their family’s peace and stability. As we provide children and families with personalized treatment, tools, coping skills and connections, they can find hope, stability and opportunities for happiness and success.

Because of you, 11,232 children, teens and adults took steps to brighter futures with CHS’ counseling and other mental health services last year

Student Thrives with Support of Community Partnership School Counselor

I have become stronger than my attacks, and now I am ready to take on my next challenge. As I graduate Evans, I believe every student should have the resources provided by the Community Partnership Schools. Every student should have a Ms. Sandra and the opportunity to realize their full potential. - Shewendlie

Shewendlie transferred to Evans High School, A Community Partnership School, in the middle of her sophomore year – at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Her stress triggered frequent panic attacks, making it impossible to focus on anything else. She was terrified … she knew she needed help. Thankfully, ShewendIie found hope and help when she was introduced to her counselor – Ms. Sandra with Children’s Home Society of Florida.

Through regular counseling sessions with Ms. Sandra, Shewendlie learned to manage her anxiety and develop strategies to cope with her new environment. Thanks to resources provided by the Community Partnership School, she overcame her anxiety and also become an active participant on campus, holding leadership positions in several clubs.

As Shewendlie prepares to graduate, she is grateful for the support she received from CHS and is proud to share her testimony because she believes every student should have access to the resources that reshaped her future.

Shewendlie Smiling

Watch Shewendlie’s story here.


Celebrating 120 Years … On Our ½ Birthday: A Look Back at Our Evolution in Mental Health Services

Can you believe we are already ½ way through our 120th milestone year?! As we reflect on our legacy, we’re proud of our leadership and evolution in meeting the needs of children and families through mental health services.

From advocating for the rights of children with mental health concerns to offering counseling in schools, homes, online and through group sessions, including play and art therapy, we’ve adapted to meet the needs of children and families in our community.

CHS' Evolution in Mental Health Services - From fighting for the rights of children with mental health concerns ... to bringing counseling in schools and homes … to online … and group sessions ... to and play and art therapy we've adapted to meet the needs of children and families in our community.

But we know that there is still much work to be done, and we can’t do it alone. Let’s work together to create a better future for children and families in our community.

Ways to help:

★ Donate – $125 can provide a therapy session for an uninsured or underinsured child in your community
★ Volunteer – Create a calming kit to support kids during CHS counseling sessions or create affirmation jar help kids build self-esteem and fight self-sabotaging emotions



Mindfulness Matters: Prioritizing Mental Health for All Ages

Be Kind to Your Mind

Whether you’re a parent, grandparent, caregiver, young person, or anyone in between, taking care of your mental health is essential. Let’s focus prioritizing our well-being. A simple way to get started: practice mindfulness.

Mindfulness, a form of meditation that involves being present in the moment without judgment, can help reduce stress and anxiety, improve sleep and attention, and prevent burnout.
What does mindfulness look like? It can be as simple as stretching, deep breathing or taking a short walk. Additionally, reducing screen time and engaging in activities you enjoy can also benefit your mental health. To help you get started, we invite you to try our CHS Coloring Book, which is available as a downloadable PDF and can be a fun way to practice mindfulness and reduce stress.

Let’s all work together to make mental health a priority this month and beyond. Remember that seeking professional help when needed is also essential. Taking care of our mental health is not only good for us but also for our loved ones and the community. If you or someone you know may benefit from CHS’ counseling services, please visit

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Celebrating National Foster Care Appreciation Month

Every child in foster care is amazing and filled with potential! This month, our nation celebrates these incredible kids – and the families, relatives, caregivers and friends who come together to help provide children in foster care with safe, loving homes.

Read more here about how foster families are making a difference in the lives of children in Volusia County.

"To us being foster parents means using our most valuable and personal resources to provide help to children in desperate need"



Shower Babies With Love

Help babies bloom by showering new parents with vital tools to keep their little ones growing strong and meeting every milestone. Host a Baby Essentials drive within your network and make a difference in the lives of local children.

Visit the Baby Essentials Spring Supply Drive event page for all the details.

smiling baby with beanie crawling lying on its belly
baby bottle, diapers, and other baby supplies



Final Thoughts … As Important as Planning for Vacation

Plan for Your Future like You Plan for Your Vacation

In about the same amount of time it takes to plan and make reservations for a vacation, you can pack your life into a plan that will give you peace of mind and in return, many benefits.

There are steps you can take to leave your things to loved ones and favorite charities that will cost you nothing.

★ Real Property – Donate your home (or vacation home) and continue to live there for the rest of your life. You can receive an income tax deduction for this gift.
★ Bank and Investment Accounts – Easily fill out a beneficiary form, from your bank or investment administrator. Your accounts will avoid delays from probate court, and go to your loved ones and favorite charities.
★ Retirement Accounts – Call your IRA, 401(k) or other retirement account administrator for a beneficiary form. You can list your loved ones and charities to receive your assets when you no longer need them.

For more information and options to plan your life’s journey, contact Casey Schroder, Director of Donor Relations & Gift Planning via email at or by phone (321) 558-4034.

You can also download your Free Estate planning guide here. With a plan there are no doubts, just peace of mind.

Additionally, if you have already included Children’s Home Society of Florida in your will but have not yet informed us, please contact Casey Schroder so you be properly thanked and ensure that your gift helps children the way you would like it to.