In the early 1980s, after volunteering for a child therapy group that held meetings at various local churches, Barbara Sinatra became convinced of the need for a permanent center to provide services for the victims of child abuse. In 1986, Barbara and Frank Sinatra founded the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center at Eisenhower. Twenty years later, Barbara Sinatra remains the driving force behind the Center.
Housed in a 12,500 square foot architecturally striking building on the Eisenhower Medical Center campus, the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center is considered a national model in the treatment of childhood sexual, physical and emotional abuse.More than 700 children and their families receive care annually. Both children and adults benefit from participation in support groups; and outreach programs educate the community about child abuse. Children’s Center staff, accompanied by “Bosley the Bear,” visit schools throughout the Coachella Valley to give kindergarten through fifth grade students age-appropriate information about child abuse.
Services offered at the Children’s Center include individual, group and family therapy, programs in anger management, communication and confidence building skills, and conflict resolution. Peer group sessions serve special populations such as adults molested as children, mothers of abused children, and grandparents raising grandchildren, as well as focused client groups including a Teen Girls Self-Esteem Program.
When they founded the Children’s Center, Frank and Barbara Sinatra made a pledge that all victims of sexual, physical and emotional abuse would receive the care, respect and counseling they deserve regardless of a family’s ability to pay for services. No child is ever denied care. Currently, more than 90 percent of the children treated at the Children’s Center come from families who live below the poverty level. To honor the Sinatra’s pledge that no child would ever be turned away because of an inability to pay, the Children’s Center relies upon a variety of annual and other fundraising projects and events, and the generosity of donors for its operating budget.
For more information about the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center at Eisenhower, please call 760-773-1636 or visit the Web site at www.sinatracenter.org. 20th Anniversary Garden
assets/news/story/cfhlimages/200611/wn-bscc1.jpg To mark its 20th anniversary, the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center is sponsoring an Anniversary Garden. When the project is complete, two rows of bricks will line the garden walkway leading to the main entrance of the Children’s Center. This brick-lined walkway is the path that has led thousands of abused children and their families to the sanctuary of the Center and the start of the healing process.
The Anniversary Garden is an important opportunity to support the Children’s Center. For a taxdeductible donation of $1,000, your name and/or personal message will be inscribed on an Anniversary Garden brick that will be a highly visible part of the Center. The Anniversary Garden will be a permanent reminder of your generous support of the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center and its vital work in counseling sexually, physically and emotionally abused children. Purchasing an Anniversary Garden brick is a meaningful way to remember a family member or friend, commemorate a special date or event, or simply as an expression of gratitude for a life that has never known the trauma of abuse.
For more information about the Anniversary Garden, to purchase an Anniversary Garden brick, or to inquire about other fundraising and event projects, please call 760-773-1636. The Children of Abuse
David, 12 years old, has witnessed domestic violence by his father for a number of years. His mother called the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center for assistance, noting her son’s history of aggression, short temper and tendency to lash out at others, including siblings, adults and classmates.
Manuel, 9 years old, is the child of drug-addicted parents, and suffered neglect and emotional abuse, and possibly sexual abuse, while living with them. Now living with his older sister and her husband, Manuel is struggling in school, is confrontational and loses his temper easily. Manuel’s sister contacted the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center for help.
Steven, at only 4 years of age, described to his mother events that had occurred with his father that revealed possible sexual molestation. Steven has numerous behavioral, emotional and physical behaviors that reflect trauma, including bed wetting, telling lies, fears of being alone, crying easily, demonstrating anti-social behavior and loss of appetite. Child Protective Services referred Steven to Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center.
Samantha has witnessed verbal and emotional abuse between her parents. The 8 year old’s mother contacted the Barbara Sinatra Children’s Center, noting that her daughter does not perform well in school, is inattentive, has little interest in family activities and is more withdrawn than usual.