Court waiting room, a safe place for kids, celebrates 50,000th visit

<strong>Kids’ Place at the Long Beach Courthouse is designed to keep children out of court proceedings that might be traumatizing to them.</strong>

The Los Angeles Superior Court and the nonprofit organization For The Child (FTC) will celebrate the 50,000th child visit to Kids’ Place at the Long Beach Courthouse on Friday, April 1 with an informal lunch from 11:45am to 1pm for those whose vision created Kids’ Place and those who each and every day help keep children safe in the courts. Each child visiting Kids’ Place-Long Beach this week will get to join in the celebration when they will get to choose a Beanie Baby and a new book to take home with them. Also, all children who are new visitors to the facility are given a book to keep.
Kids’ Place was designed to keep children out of adult proceedings they are too young to understand and that have the potential to traumatize them. Kids’ Place-Long Beach opened in August 2002 with a grant secured from First 5 LA (then the Proposition 10 Commission) by For The Child. It was the first children’s waiting room in Los Angeles County created as a safe and fun place for children whose parents had business before the court. Finding a location in the courthouse was problematic until Supervisor Don Knabe moved his field office to accommodate the waiting room. As many as 2,500 child visits a year were anticipated, but in 2009-2010, Kids’ Place Long Beach had 6,200 visits from kids. FTC has operated Kids’ Place-Long Beach since 2006 with funding from the Los Angeles Superior Court.
FTC has been providing prevention and treatment services for abused, neglected and at-risk children in the greater Long Beach for more than 37 years. Services for children are supported through individual, group and corporate donations, foundation grants and government funding. A description of FTC’s programs is available online at forthechild.org. To help, call For The Child at (562) 422-8472.

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