A Message from Our CEO

A Message from Our CEO

While 2020-2021 has been a year like no other, I am heartened to share the new and exciting opportunities that have emerged and that continue to evolve here at CHC. We quickly responded to those in need with innovative solutions. Telehealth and distance learning options became the preference for many of our families and have opened doors for services to clients in new areas. We were also able to increase our reach by 23% through various CHC programs ranging from clinical services to community partnerships to online resources, among others.

This was no small feat, considering the staggering statistics on mental health during the pandemic. Here in California, there has been a 151% increase in inpatient visits for suicide, suicidal ideation, and self-injury for children ages 10-14. UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland reported suicide attempts in the fall of 2020 were double that of 2019. And Black youth are disproportionately impacted, with a suicide rate twice that of their white peers. All this, on top of the 1 in 5 young people who live with learning differences and 40 percent of those who also experience anxiety and depression.

Here at CHC, in August of 2020, our call volume rose 150%, and families grew increasingly concerned about their child’s learning differences and emotional behavior. Our response during this unforgettable year was a community effort that resulted in the following:

  • Increased therapeutic services while balancing the needs of therapists and their families.
  • Ensured that all 200+ students enrolled in the Sand Hill School and Esther B. Clark schools continued their educational programming with no interruptions through hybrid in-person and distance learning.
  • Where possible, maintained in-person evaluations through the pandemic, so that help for young people and their families would continue uninterrupted.
  • Continued and migrated our ever so important community education and parent support groups from in-person to virtual delivery. Our new Voices of Compassion podcast series met the community’s needs with great success.
  • Provided $1.85M in financial assistance in fiscal year 2020-21 – nearly double from the year before – resulting in increased care to traditionally underserved and racially diverse communities in San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties through our work in Ravenswood.

The challenges we face are the reason why CHC is here and why so many families return to CHC to receive expert care for their loved ones. I invite you to read on as we share how CHC has brought some of the most life-changing moments to families around the Bay Area. Thank you for being here for our community, and we look forward to working side-by-side with you for years to come.

With gratitude,

Rosalie Whitlock, PhD
Chief Executive Officer at CHC

1from KQED Forum, The Kids Are Not All Right: How The Pandemic Has Intensified Mental Health Problems for Young People.