DENVER, CO – Today, Tennyson Center for Children (Tennyson Center) announced an additional $1 million in funding from Congress to help open a new trauma-informed youth residential program in North Denver.
Thus far, funding has come from the State of Colorado and corporate gifts, and this latest funding allocation was secured by U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO). It was passed by both houses of Congress in December.
The residential program will address the urgent and unmet mental health needs of vulnerable low-income children aged 5-20 with a co-occurring intellectual and/or developmental disability (I/DD) and mental health needs.
“This federal investment will provide much-needed services to children who have been previously underserved in our community,” said Mindy Watrous, President and CEO of Tennyson Center. “Our residential program will provide trauma-informed, innovative, and high-quality residential services as part of an integrated continuum of care. We are grateful for the support of Congress and look forward to making a positive impact in the lives of the children we serve.”
The residential program reflects the urgent and unmet need for residential services for this population of children. Only four other providers have specialized expertise in working with this population. Many families are left waiting for months, needing appropriate care for their child or family member. The number of children and youth on the Children’s Habilitation Residential Program (CHRP) waiver has risen by almost 42% from July 2020 to October 2021, totaling 246 children.
“Investing in the mental health and well-being of our children not only improves their quality of life, but it also makes financial sense,” said Watrous. “Research shows that the average cost of raising a child with autism exceeds $2.4 million. By providing early interventions and support, we can help children with intellectual and developmental disabilities live as independently as possible, ultimately saving taxpayers money throughout that child's lifetime.”
Tennyson Center’s effort was supported by the Campaign for Trauma-Informed Policy and Practice through technical assistance and a letter of support.
“We are so pleased that Congresswoman DeGette secured this investment for a project that’s going to ensure children and families receive support to succeed,” said Jesse Kohler, Executive Director of CTIPP. “We’re grateful that Tennyson Center reached out to CTIPP for assistance because everyone benefits when we work together. The residential program will create meaningful and lasting change throughout the Denver community, benefiting generations to come.”
Construction on the residential program is expected to begin in Spring 2023.
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Tennyson Center for Children has provided compassionate care and treatment for kids and families impacted by trauma since 1904. We help Colorado’s most vulnerable young people find paths to healing through intensive in-home therapy, our day treatment school, ChildFirst, an evidence-based intensive in-home program for families with children 0 - 5, and support services. Connect on LinkedIn, Facebook, Youtube, and Instagram.
The Campaign for Trauma-Informed Policy and Practice (CTIPP) is a national nonprofit committed to creating a trauma-informed society where individuals, families, and communities have the support and resources necessary to thrive. Through advocacy, policy, and education, CTIPP is building a movement that integrates trauma-informed, resilience-focused, and healing-centered prevention, intervention, and treatment approaches across all sectors and generations. Connect with CTIPP on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram.