On May 24, 2019, the Board of Directors of Aviva Children’s Services (Aviva) entered into an Agreement to move their operations under the auspices of Easterseals Blake Foundation (EBF) effective July 1, 2019. Aviva will maintain its non-profit status as wholly owned subsidiary of Easterseals Blake Foundation.

Formed in 1978, Aviva has been a premier family visitation center for children in the care of child welfare agencies throughout Pima County. Understanding the theraputic value of play for both children and parents, Aviva’s midtown building provides a safe and child-centered environment. In 2015, a generous gift from Angel Charities allowed a secure outdoor visitation center to be added. The first of it’s kind in Southern Arizona, this environment doubled Aviva’s annual capacity for positive family interactions.

According to Tyson Gillespie, Executive Director of Aviva Children’s Services, “Our Board, employees, and volunteers are excited about this new partnership with Easterseals Blake Foundation.  The collaboration will create new and innovative supports and services for the children and families in our community that are involved in the child welfare system.”

Founded in 1950, Easterseals Blake Foundation is dedicated to the vision of a Southern Arizona community where all people live healthy, productive, and independent lives. EBF serves children, adults, and families throughout 10 Arizona counties.  Designated as a Behavioral Health Center of Excellence, EBF is known as a leader in infant / child mental health and family preservation services, serving approximately 12,000 children and families in Southern Arizona.  Each year, EBF also serves over 1,000 children in the Foster Care System.

Together, Easterseals Blake Foundation and Aviva Children’s Services will develop a Center of Excellence for children involved with or at high risk for involvement with the Foster/Kinship care system. The Aviva Center will be a preferred provider of system partners such as Department of Child Safety, State Foster Care Health Plans, school systems, law enforcement and families along the continuum of risk, removal and reunification.

Aviva’s legacy of providing critical basic resources to foster children will be preserved by maintaining the current operational programs, including the important contributions of our special group of volunteers known as the Aviva Divas.

“EBF has the clinical expertise and administrative infrastructure to expeditiously establish and manage comprehensive behavioral health services.  Utilizing the therapeutic environment of the Aviva center, we will expand therapy services and parenting education, furthering the missions of both organizations,” stated Ema Kammeyer, CEO Easterseals Blake Foundation.

Look for expanded services and a celebration of this partnership in the fall of 2019!