July 21, 2016 marked the grand opening celebration of a major expansion at Casa de Amparo's Casa Kids Campus in San Marcos. A new counseling wing, providing a comfortable space for therapeutic services for abused and neglected children and families, and expansion of the Pregnant and Parenting Residential Services cottage were announced. The evening was highlighted with an announcement that the Walter J. and Betty C. Zable Foundation will support the next phase of the organization's capital expansion with a $1 million challenge grant, whereby, the Zable Foundation will match every dollar raised up to $1 million.
The event began with a ribbon-cutting ceremony lead by Tamara Fleck-Myers, Casa de Amparo's Executive Director. She was accompanied by members of Casa de Amparo's Board of Directors, members of the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce, and other community advocates including Don Burgett, community representative for Congressman Duncan Hunter.
Other guests in attendance included Jerry Stein representing the Facilities Committee of the Board of Directors, Jim Grant of Grant General Contractors and Chair of the Facilities Committee of the Board of Directors, and representatives from Tucker Sadler Architects.
The expansion of these two facilities at Casa de Amparo will enable the organization to house approximately 40 pregnant and parenting teens annually and provide much-needed counseling services to local at-risk youth and their families. Executive Director Tamara Fleck- Myers announced, "With these additional resources, Casa de Amparo is able to significantly increase the level of therapeutic support provided to vulnerable youth and families in the community. These young mothers now have a safe environment where they can learn effective, evidence-based parenting skills, create positive attachment with their baby, and feel protected in a loving, supportive environment. Ultimately our goal, with the help of donors and other community advocates, is to create a San Diego where child abuse and neglect are not tolerated."
The future growth of Casa de Amparo was also revealed during the presentation at the Campus Expansion Celebration. A Community Treatment Facility and storage and maintenance building will be the next step in developing the Casa Kids Campus, both spaces have been designed by Tucker Sadler Architects. The Community Treatment Facility will provide intensive trauma-informed services for youth requiring a higher level of care due to the abuse and neglect they have experienced and will be the only home of its kind in San Diego and the surrounding areas. Tamara went on to explain, "Currently, due to the lack of this type of home and support services in the area, many youth are sent out of state to receive the specialized care they require. We are so proud that Casa de Amparo will be able to meet this need in San Diego County and provide youth a safe environment where they can heal." The storage and maintenance building will provide Casa de Amparo's Facilities team the space to house equipment and supplies to maintain the organization's program sites, storage for in-kind items which support program operation, and house industrial washers and dryers.
The cost of the Community Treatment Facility and storage and maintenance building will be funded by a capital fundraising campaign with a goal of $7.8 million. The Zable Foundation matching gift has kicked-off the campaign and to date Casa de Amparo has raised $366,000 toward the $1 million challenge grant. The Walter J. and Betty C. Zable Foundation was founded in 1997 and generally supports organizations located in San Diego County. The Zable Foundation's areas of funding include medical and science activities, programs that benefit youth and underprivileged individuals, and sports related activities.
To make a donation toward the capital campaign, please contact Kathy Karpe, director of development for Casa de Amparo at 760-566-3556. Visit www.casadeamparo.org.