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125 Reasons, continued — Reasons 46-66


46.  Donna Tubach-Davis,  Winter 2002 “Moments” newsletter

Editor’s note: Donna Tubach-Davis retired from CSI as executive director in 2004. This story appeared in celebration of her 30th year with the agency and reflected on the impact that she had on CSI’s history of progressive and innovative services for children. Donna remains committed to CSI's kids and is a member of our Legacy Society.

Thirty years ago Donna Tubach walked through CSI’s front door at 42nd and Emilie, full of the idealism that motivated so many baby-boomers of the 1970s, but experienced enough, from eight years of social work, to know that in this new position she would not change the whole world. What she didn’t know was she was stepping over the threshold of a 30-year tenure with a premier child welfare agency — and within 10 years she would earn her way to the highest position of leadership.

Donna has devoted her entire career to administering and developing progressive child welfare programs for children and families. Her focus in child welfare has resulted in the development of nationally recognized services to single mothers, the implementation of cutting-edge adoption programs (including open adoption and recruitment of black families for waiting children), numerous home-based family support programs, early intervention and prevention services including the first infant child care program in Nebraska, and emergency shelter services for children who cannot remain in their homes.

Donna has not changed the “whole” world during her 30 years at CSI, but because of her leadership and guidance, countless lives have been touched with hope and healing, and thousands of people have formed new family relationships. 


47.  1931 Annual Report

Our Mission:  The care of needy babies.

Our Purpose:  To conserve the health and happiness, the bodies, minds, and souls of four score of God’s wards.

Our Goal:  To place them in desirable homes for adoption if possible, or restore them to reconstructed homes.

A charitable institution serving unfortunate childhood.


48.  Programs and Services Goals, 2000 Annual Report

The programs and services offered by Child Saving Institute focus on eight common goals:

  • Promoting the well-being of CHILDREN, continually demanding that each program provide “what’s best for kids.”
  • Recognizing that all children deserve to be part of a healthy family or a family-like setting.
  • Supporting parents in being the very best parents they can be.
  • Providing children who are out of their homes with the least restrictive care.
  • Practicing a philosophy of self-determination in all services, honoring each person’s right to make his/her own choices.
  • Providing unconditional care to children.
  • Collaborating with other agencies and programs in order to best serve children and their families.
  • Maintaining high standards of quality in all aspects of all services.


49.  Our Debt Free Home, Early 1930s Annual Report  

We endeavor to keep a home-like atmosphere. This depression has crowded us — but the doors are still open! A happy home, stout back and legs, good food, books, fun, laughter, and playthings are a child’s birthright. We are out of debt; no interest to pay. We live on what you send us. We operate on less money than most homes. It is our duty to make your money stretch.


50.  Placement and Permanency, 2008 Annual Report

  • 155 children placed into foster homes
  • 94% of foster families did not have disruptions during the year
  • 34 families were certified as foster care providers
  • 10 children were placed with adoptive families
  • 312 adoptees, birth parents and adoptive parents served by post adoption services
  • 39 Independent Living Skills clients served by CSI
  • 1,953 foster child adoption inquiries
  • 34 pregnancy counseling clients served


51.  Amy's Story — Pediatric Social Work

Anabel, a CSI early childhood social worker, met mom Amy and her baby at the baby’s four month well child check. Amy completed the Edinburgh Depression Screening and the score was of a concern. Amy was very tearful and sad. Anabel explained the PEDS program and Amy agreed to services.

At the first home visit, Amy shared that the school where her first-grade child attended made a report to Child Protective Services on her husband for spanking the child with a belt. The situation caused some of her anxiety and stress. Amy explained that her husband thought this was no big deal and did not understand why it was a problem. Amy was worried about the CPS investigation. At the next home visit, Anabel met with both parents to explain why spanking with a belt was in fact a big deal and educated the dad on more appropriate discipline techniques. Anabel shared some steps the parents could take before the court date to show their willingness to learn better ways to parent.

Anabel connected Amy to Visiting Nurse Association for weekly home visits to support Amy with her needs and those of her infant (which included assisting Amy to connect to her OB for a follow up for maternal depression). Anabel also connected Amy to Circle of Security Parenting Classes which Amy completed. Anabel connected dad to the Fathers for a Lifetime program.

During home visits, Anabel observed the older child to have challenging behaviors that were difficult to control. She recommended to Amy that she take the child to the pediatrician to be evaluated. The pediatrician recommended additional testing for ADHD which was diagnosed by a specialist. In addition to the medication prescribed by the specialist, Anabel also assisted the family to connect with a scholarship for membership at the Kroc Center so Amy’s older child would have an additional outlet for all that energy.

At the court hearing regarding the CPS report, the family showed the judge the steps they were taking to be better parents and there were no findings against the dad; allowing the family to stay intact.

At the 30 day follow-up call after discharge, dad continued attending classes and Amy was still connected to VNA. Amy was happy about the family bonding that was occurring between her older child and husband as they utilized the Kroc Center several times a week for physical activities.


52.  Pediatric Social Work

Child Saving Institute is dedicated to the prevention, intervention and treatment of child abuse and neglect in the Omaha metropolitan area. The agency’s Pediatric Social Work program operates in collaboration with three pediatric clinics in the Omaha community that serve low-income populations, focusing on preventing child abuse and neglect by providing parenting and child development support to maintain or strengthen child, individual and family functioning. During regularly scheduled well-child check ups, a CSI Pediatric Social Worker screens children under age 5 and mothers of children under age 1 for risk factors. All families completing the screenings receive an education consultation from the CSI Pediatric Social Worker to promote growth and to empower parents to be part of their child’s healthy development. Children or parents scoring in the concern range on any of the screenings may receive in-home support if the family accepts the free services. In-home support is designed to strengthen family skills and link the family to community resources to address basic needs, mental or physical health. 


53.  Pediatric Social Work Outcomes, 2016

  • 93% of clients seeking in-home support were successfully connected to appropriate intervention or treatment.
  • 100% of parents or guardians responding 6 months to a year after the completion of Pediatric Social Work services report that their own or their children’s social emotional, behavioral health and overall wellbeing has improved and/or been supported.
  • 100% of client’s parents or guardians report they are able to support their children’s development.
  • 94% of client’s parents or guardians report that their children are safe and remained in custodial parents’ or guardians’ care.


54.  Anabel Albuja, Early Childhood Social Worker

Early Childhood Social Worker Anabel Albuja finds meaning in her role with CSI’s Pediatric Social Work program by connecting low-income mothers who have children from newborn to age 5 with the support and services they need to ensure the well-being of the child, the mother and the family.

“It’s a blessing for me to witness how our program makes a positive impact for children and their families when supportive service are offered. Anabel said. “I love to hear the mothers share their experiences and gratitude for the services received and how their children benefitted. This is the pay-off for my efforts of serving our families with respect and dignity.”

CSI’s Pediatric Social Work program operates in three low-income medical clinics in Omaha. Every mother with a child newborn to 12 months is  and screened for depression; children 6 month to 5 years are screened for social emotional development. All families are assessed for support networks, and parenting skills.

“Children are more at risk with mothers and families that feel hopeless and lack family or community support,” she said. “Responding to the cry of children in the community with programs like this one, it’s a privilege that goes beyond words.”

Anabel earned her bachelor’s degree in marketing from College of St. Mary’s and also has an associate’s degree in early childhood education. She is working toward her master’s degree in clinical counseling and is certified as a facilitator for Circle of Security Parenting, is a certified medical interpreter, and has certification as Parent Connectors for Boys Town.

She finds value in CSI’s mission, vision, and the agency’s fundamental beliefs.

“I love the people who I work with day -in-day-out,” Anabel said. “The mental health therapists are the best. CSI has become part of my extended family and I am honored to be part of it. We're on the same page —  doing what’s best for children!”


55.  Letter to Rev. A.W. Clark, 1914 (all grammar and spelling as written by the child)

Manhattan (KS) Feb. 2, 1914

Dear Rev. Clark,

I am the little baby that Mamma got up at the Home, so long ago. We have a nice home and I like it to (sic), and I think Papa and mamma like it to.

I'd like to get a letter from you. I go to school every day, and get a hundred in my school work most all the time, I like my Teacher. She has 35 boys and girls, but mamma has only me. There is a little girl who lives near us, that I play with and we do have lots of good times. My grandma lives near me and I go over to see them most every day.

Christmas eve, my grandpa, grandma, uncle and aunty were over to our house to my nice christmas tree, and we all had such a good time. I sang a song, and spoke a piece about Books. I got lots of presants, a bag of candy, a dolly, a horn, a vase, a little pocket-book, an iron, a blackboard, and 6 nice books. I like books best of any kind of presant. I have about 53 dollars of my own saved in the Bank. Papa gave it to me. I send love to all the children at the home and hope they all get good homes and Papas and Mammas to love them.

Best wishes from Helena R. Collarn


56.  Report of the Child Saving Institute and Iowa's Share of the Gifts to Children, 1937 report

During the year of 1937, 186 children were cared for, receiving 24,748 days' care. Ninety of these were returned to relatives and 38 placed for adoption, leaving 57 in the Home the last day of December. During the year 50 adoptions were completed of children placed the year before. There were 72 children in foster homes under our supervision the last day of December. Three of our older girls were happily married during the year. The total expense was $30,602.94. Twenty-one churches were represented in the annual meeting and many groups from different churches have visited and enjoyed the children from time to time.

Iowa had its usual fine part in providing food, clothing, and loving care for the babies. In light of existing conditions Iowa was most generous in its outpouring of both cash and merchandise donations, and it is due to the friendship of the churches that we are able to care for so many homeless, undernourished, and neglected little ones. Several churches did not see their way clear to help, but with the splendid rains bringing fresh hope and courage to all our hearts, these, too, will join in bringing health to thin bodies and happiness to forlorn little hearts. May every church have a part in 1938, and make Iowa  share 100 per cent (sic) in the the care of the babies of the Child Saving Institute.


57.  Gladys, early 1900s

To a tumbled down farm house, far removed from the beaten path, and almost hidden by friendly trees, a kindly old lady brought her unfortunate granddaughter to shelter her from inquisitive eyes with the promise that she would help her care for her baby when it arrived.

However, when they looked upon the tiny ... mite of humanity, they realized that more help was needed than that of the grandmother, willing though she was, for the baby ...[had a cleft palate] and was unable to get the proper nourishment. ...Healthy though she was in every other way....

Impossible to find aid closer they brought the baby to the Child Saving Institute at 10 days of age. [The baby] required weeks of feeding with an eye dropper .... Since that time, with the cooperation of the University Hospital and Dr. Shearer, five delicate operations have been performed and there is still one to be done. Because of the nature of the operations, there had to be long periods of waiting between and Gladys is now 4 years old. 

It is quite evident that she will be able to go out into the world without an impediment of speech and very little, if any, signs of ... [this problem].

She is a bright, attractive little girl. Her lot would have been a hard one had it not been possible for the Child Saving Institute to undertake this long period of care. Well all know what difficulty a [problem] of this kind makes to one in life. Gladys is only one of the many little children who have life made better for them in the Child Saving Institute.


58.  Application to the Russell Sage Foundation, November 1897 

Reception of Children

8. What is your policy with reference to the preservation of families? We make special efforts to preserve famliies & only take the children as the last resort.

a. Do you endeavor, as far as practicable, to have people care for their own children? We constantly put forth efforts by persuasion and by enforcement of law to have parents care for their own children. We often assist them in their home & care for the children temporarily in the Institute to enable them to do this.

b. Do you generally accept children whose parents are willing or desirous to relinquish them? We refuse to accept any child until the case is investigated and in many cases refuse to allow parents to sign relinquishment papers when they are desirous of doing so. It depends on the circumstances in the case and on what the best interest of the child require.

c. Do you make temporary provision for children whose parents are likely to be able to resume the care for their children later on? Yes.

d. If so, in what way? By caring for them in the Institute a few weeks or months and by assisting them in their own home.


59.  "Thank You to Barb and Patty," CSI Quarterly Update, Winter 1984-1985

The Board of Directors of the Children's Crisis Center celebrated the merger of the Children's Crisis Center with PAL [Parent Assistance Line] and Child Saving Institute at a wine and cheese party in December. Board President Bruce Vosburg presented gifts to Executive Director Barb Washburn and Development Director Patty Shefte. Bruce spoke for the Board in thanking Barb and Patty for their long hours and hard work at the Center. He stressed that their dedication was instrumental in creating, building, and maintaining an excellent and needed service in our community


60.  "A Perfect '100' Weekend," Child Saving Institute News, Centennial Edition, Fall 1992 

Activities looking at both past and present characterized Child Saving Institute's Centennial Celebration Weekend, held August 1-2.

Kicking off the weekend was an Adoptive Families Reunion held Saturday at Peony Park, with guests ranging in age from 3-month-old Mary Goodwin, recently adopted daughter of Rose and Mark Goodwin, to 88-year-old Albert D. Harper, now known to be CSI's oldest living adoptee.

During a morning panel discussion the group shared their own personal experiences about the changes seen in adoption during the last 100 years, ranging from a very private, not-discussed matter, to the desire to find birhtparents and a link with one's biological past, to the very open adoption arrangements available today in which birthparents may be part of the child's extended family and adoption is openly and comfortably discussed.

Mr. Harper, who contacted CSI and identified himself after reading about CSI's actual 100th anniversary in the Omaha World-Herald last spring, share his story with the group, noting that he did not discover he was adopted until well into his adulthood.

"I was 37 at the time, and needed to have a copy of my birth certificate because my work with the City of Omaha Water Department during World War II was viewed as possibly sensitive. Well, I didn't have one. Then my wife Alice told me about my adoption, which my parents had told her of when we were married," he explained. " Although they told her she could tell me if she wanted to, Alice could sense they would rather she didn't. So up until then, I knew nothing. When I found out, I called my father, who was still alive, to tell him I knew and that I didn't really care. He was glad to hear that I felt that way. My life had been so normal and full, I just let it fall where it may."

The reunion families shared a picnic lunch and were then free to enjoy the rides, pool and waterslides at the park for the afternoon. They gathered again later for an informal evening banquet.

On Sunday afternoon, CSI sponsored a Children of All Ages Birthday Party as a thank you to the Omaha community for its continued support. held in the south parking lot of the Omaha Children's Museum, the party featured Shrine clowns and activities like recycle art, face painting and giant bubbles. Ron Brown, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Cornhuskers receivers coach, autographed footballs. Entertainment was provided by the Dropalotus Jugglers from the Emmy Gifford Children's Theater and the Salem Stepping Saints from Salem Baptist Church. 

Bev Bonner and Babs Weinberg were chairmen for the Adoptive Families Reunion, and were assisted by Carmen Gottschalk and Olga Parrish. Maggie Mundy was chairman of the birthday party event. She was assisted by board members Marsha Johns, Sally Kaplan, Mary Ryan-Ferer and Kim Skutt, as well as Betsy Moran and Helen Shewu.


61.  "Child Saving Institute Offers Integrated Services," A Special Edition of CSI's Moments Newsletter, Winter 2000

Child Saving Institute offers a variety of services, and often clients overlap programs as their needs change. What has evolved is a unique continuum of services and care, with clients being able to build and maintain strong and trusting relationships with CSI staff.

Having such a wide range of programs allows CSI to be more likely to suit an individual's potential needs. A client may come into contact with CSI looking for a particular service, when they might be better served through a different CSI program.

CSI's programs vary in levels of intensity and involvement, and  as situations improve or become more stressful, clients can transition into the program best suited to their needs. CSI also has the opportunity to offer continuing services. Once a client has completed one program they may still require support, and choose to move on to another of CSI's programs.

The following is a true and heart warming account of how CSI was able to offer a continuum of assistance to a child.

Michael is a 10-year-old child who entered CSI's Crisis Center because of a foster care placement disruption. He had originally entered the State of Nebraska's Health and Human Service system due to neglect in his parents' home. Michael remained in the Crisis Center for approximately one month before being transitioned into one of CSI's Therapeutic Foster Care homes. Michael's biological parents decided they could not provide for him and relinquished their parental rights, making Michael legally free for adoption. He remained in his foster care home while CSI's Special Needs Adoption program began seeking a family who could provide him love, care and a stable home.

A potential adoptive home was identified through CSI's collaboration with Julie Cornell and KETV's 7 Can Help Kids Find Families. The family underwent a home study and, after a brief transition period, have now permanently included Michael as part of their family. With just 12 months and three CSI programs, Michael's life changed from one full of uncertainty and upheaval to one brimming with security and love.

This is only one example of the ways CSI strives to continue to provide services to children and families within it's own doors. The staff at CSI truly cares about the welfare of each and every client, and is proud to be an important part of the lives of so many special people like Michael.


62.  In 2016, the Child Welfare Services department served 1,748 kids, families and foster homes.




63.  Kim Bellinger, Triage Center Supervisor

Children arrive at Project Harmony after experiencing what is likely the worst day of their young lives, removed from their family homes and brought to Project Harmony by the police or a caseworker.  Their first stop? The Triage Center, where Kim Bellinger and her staff try to help put the children at ease.

Kim Bellinger joined Child Saving Institute as Triage Center supervisor only six months ago and has already had an impact on the children she serves. She has an associate’s degree in human services with a certificate in chemical dependency from Metropolitan Community College and a bachelor’s degree in behavioral sciences from Bellevue University.

The center is set up in a home-like environment, with areas for infants, toddlers, young children, and teens, to ease whatever anxiety they may feel. Kim may make them something to eat in the kitchen; she may sit quietly with them; or she may provide a shoulder to cry on. She also tries to identify an adult family member or other adult who the child knows and trusts and who is willing to welcome them into their home for the time being.

“My favorite part of the job is being able to put children at ease when they arrive at the Triage Center,” Kim said. “It can be challenging sometimes when multiple children are here to give each as much one-on-one time as I would like.”

Kim has worked with kids throughout her career — with kids on probation, as a family support specialist for Sarpy County Head Start and Early Head Start, in intensive family preservation, and providing supervised visits for kids in foster care.


64.  State of Nebraska, License to Place Children,  Agency's 30th Year 1922


65.  "$100,000 Estate Goes to Charity," Omaha Bee Dec. 25, 1925

Many Child Saving Institute supporters have included the agency in their wills and estate plans over the years, including Mr. Oscar E. Bishop of  Blue Springs, NE. In 1925, Mr. Bishop left the bulk of his $100,000 to a variety of charities, five of which (including CSI) received $15,000. Below is the news story and a receipt for the final settlement.


66.  1934 Fact Sheet

  •  The Child Saving Institute up through December 31, 1934, has cared for 6,221 children.
  • The Child Saving Institute cared for 162 children during this last year, giving them a normal, happy childhood and saving them from poverty and vice.
  • The Child Saving Institute stands for the family life for the child and has proven itself a valuable friend to hundreds of homes. This last year, 61 children were returned to their own adjusted homes.
  • The Child Saving Institute places children in carefully selected foster homes, where it is not possible to return them to their own homes. 30 such children have been place the last year.
  • The Child Saving institute has in its care, as its own ward, one blind child who requires very special attention and training.
  • The Child Saving Institute gave shelter and protection and the opportunity of becoming useful citizens to 43 girls.
  • During April, 1934, the Child Saving Institute cared for 94 children.
  • Every child in the Child Saving Institute gets one quart of milk daily. The milk bill was $1,003.11 last year.
  • It is the function of the Child Saving Institute to care for the pre-school children of the area which it serves and not one of this class who came to us for aid have been turned away.
  • Hundreds of former wards of the child Saving Institute come to visit the institution to express their appreciation for care during their tender years and for the splendid home in which they were placed.
  • Every day is visiting day at the Child Saving institute and visitors have come every day this year. Some days from forty to fifty people have gone through the institution. 
  • The income of the Child Saving Institute was the smallest this year that it has been in many years.


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