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CHKD Mental Health Hospital Receives $1 Million Grant from Hampton Roads Community Foundation

Elizabeth Earley: or (757) 668-9049

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – The Hampton Roads Community Foundation has awarded a $1 million grant to Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters to support the health system’s new 60-bed mental health hospital and outpatient center for children and adolescents.

The grant is one of the most generous the foundation has awarded in recent history.

The mental health crisis facing our children has surfaced at every level of CHKD’s regional care network for children, from our primary care pediatricians and outpatient clinics to our mental health therapists and emergency department. CHKD launched a bold initiative in 2015 to answer the community’s need for more mental health services.

The centerpiece of this transformational response is a 14-story facility, currently under construction on the same campus as CHKD’s main hospital. The $224 million tower is scheduled to open in 2022, and will provide a full spectrum of mental health care for children, including outpatient therapy, inpatient rooms with sleeping accommodations for a parent, and a “partial hospitalization” program in which children will receive treatment during the day, and return home at night.

Children’s mental wellness is a civic leadership initiative of the Hampton Roads Community Foundation, which is southeastern Virginia’s largest grant and scholarship provider. In 2019, for example, the organization partnered with CHKD on a forum featuring renowned child psychiatrist Gregory Fritz, M.D., to engage the community in conversation about the challenges and opportunities for all youth to have good mental health.
The foundation recognizes that the mental health needs of the region’s children have become even more imperative during the pandemic as children’s social and educational foundations shift, and their families endure financial and health hardships.

“CHKD’s newest facility will help meet the needs of pediatric patients grappling with mental health issues,” said Deborah DiCroce, president and CEO of the Hampton Roads Community Foundation. “The hospital – coupled with broad community support for it – will have a transformational effect on the lives of children and families in the region and state. The community foundation enthusiastically supports this effort.”

Even before the pandemic, this community did not have the capacity to meet the crushing mental health needs of children. Community pediatricians are overwhelmed with mental health needs of patients, and children are spending too much time waiting for openings for care.

“We are so grateful to the Hampton Roads Community Foundation for recognizing the critical need for more mental health services for children in our area,” said CHKD President and CEO Jim Dahling. “The foundation’s leadership and support of our mental health initiative serves as a rallying cry for the community, as individuals, organizations, and businesses work together to bring these desperately needed services to our children.”

John Lawson II, chair of the Lighting the Way Campaign that is raising philanthropic support for CHKD’s  mental health initiative, said decisions made by the Hampton Roads Community Foundation truly set the stage for the most important priorities in our region. “This historic gift signals the critical investment necessary to address the gaping holes in mental health services, not just for children here in Hampton Roads, but throughout the commonwealth and beyond.”

News Releases - Artist's rendering of CHKD mental health hospital and outpatient center

Artist’s rendering of CHKD mental health hospital and outpatient center.