James Aldrich, CEO of Children’s Hope Residential Services (CHRS), spends the majority of his day looking for ways to enrich the lives abused and neglected. However, Aldrich didn’t always want to work with abused and neglected children. As a master’s student, James Aldrich was studying to be Dean of a large university. All of his courses were in the evenings, and he found that he had a lot of time on his hands. He decided to get a job using his bachelors, and procured employment working for a local Residential Treatment Center (RTC). Until then, he had had no idea that there were children in the U.S. that had been so abused and neglected by, in many cases, their own families. It lit a fire inside of Aldrich, and when that RTC and many others in the state began to close its doors, he felt compelled to do something. Rallying the resources or investors, he went to work to open Children’s Hope.
CHRS is more than a Residential Treatment Center, it is a non-profit organization containing two residential treatment centers and multiple foster/adoption centers across Texas. Why? Because James Aldrich knows that there is more to caring for a child than providing room, board, healthcare, and therapy. He works endlessly to provide opportunities and resources for each child within CHRS’s. He looks for opportunities for the children to go on vacations and trips, participate in sports, connect with families and the community, and have every opportunity a child could possible wish.
How does Aldrich provide these opportunities to CHRS children? Through generous donations from civic groups, foundations and organizations that are focused on improving children’s quality of life and individual donors. He works long days spreading the mission and vision of Children’s Hope to everyone he meets. That mission: “…providing care for children that are the hardest to care for because of their abuse. We strive to provide a safe and loving home environment for the children. While at Children’s Hope we work with the children to make accomplishments and fulfill their treatment goals with the end result of graduating from our program. Once a child graduates, they are now ready to restore their childhood in a home setting.” Aldrich’s goal: that every child who crosses CHRS’s doorway is given the opportunity to experience a normal childhood.