Epworth Children’s Home is a vital part of the ministry of this church and of the United Methodist Church in South Carolina. For most of us, we have never heard the actual voices of children who have suffered abuse and neglect. Darien was a neglected child who, with the help of Epworth, has a transformed life and future. Take a few moments to listen to his moving story below.
What is Epworth Children's Home?
Epworth Children’s Home provides a safe, stable and loving environment for every child who calls this beautiful 32 acre campus “home.” Children between the ages of four and eighteen come to Epworth in one of two ways:
1. Government Placements are referred to ECH by the SC Department of Social Services after being removed from their current home environment for abuse or neglect. Government placements make up an average of 65% of Epworth’s total population. The State of SC becomes the legal guardian of the child while he/she lives at Epworth.
- The plan of care for these children is determined by DSS and can range from:
i. Reunification with the family unit.
ii. Long term foster care or residential care placements.
iii. Termination of parental rights that allow the child to enter the adoption process.
iv. Kinship care that makes it possible for the child to live with a blood relative other than the parent.
2. Private Family Placements are referred to ECH by a family member or a member of the child’s community, such as a pastor or grandparent. Private placements make up the remaining 35% of the population. The current legal guardian maintains custody of the child while he/she lives at Epworth and children can be reunited with the family at the family’s request.
Regardless of the reason children are placed at Epworth, they receive comprehensive individualized care that meets their needs in the following areas:
Epworth’s child care philosophy and practice is based upon the work of an international research team facilitated by the Residential Child Care Project at CornellUniversity. C.A.R.E., an acronym for Children and Residential Experience, is based upon key principles that create conditions for positive change in the lives of children and families. These principles were derived from recent research and best practices gleaned from the field’s most highly respected practitioners. The application of this model of child care allows Epworth to create an environment that is understanding, sensitive, and respectful of the struggles of children and families in today’s world. This approach promotes healing and positive change, rather than attempting to temporarily control behavior.