It is our responsibility to see that these children are not forgotten.-- LaVaughn Tilton, Hibiscus Founder and Chair Emerita, Hibiscus Boards of Directors
Until 2004, the Hibiscus Children's Center had been known mainly for our emergency Shelter in Jensen Beach. Most people were not aware that the Shelter was forced to turn away children and that a community outpouring to remedy this situation was about to take place.
The "Building Hope … Mending Lives" Campaign began with the generosity of a local couple, Norman and his late wife, Betty Gene Hensick, who donated a 4.3 acre lot in Vero Beach. Upon learning of the need for a new facility for abused children, this wonderful couple stepped right into action. Under the leadership of the Hibiscus Children's Center Board of Directors and with the assistance of hundreds of volunteers, a $5 million capital campaign was launched across the Treasure Coast … and successfully completed.
May, 2004, the Hibiscus Village opened its doors. Providing a safe haven to abused, neglected and abandoned children ages 12 to 18 years, the Village consists of group homes, a campus center and a recreation area. Over the years, Hibiscus has enriched the lives of hundreds of abused children. Everyday, Hibiscus continues to help children begin the recovery process that will provide a solid foundation for their continued growth and development into adulthood.
In August 2011, an exciting addition to the Village programs was added. The Career Pathways to Independence Program (Click here for BROCHURE), provided by an Indian River Impact 100 grant, was implemented to prepare 15 to 17 year old youths for independence at age 18. When we work with our teens, the thought of becoming independent at age 18 can be stressful to them. Hibiscus Children's Center program, together with existing efforts by United For Families and Children's Home Society, prepares youth for independence and can set the stage for lifelong success.