Family Service Agency of San Francisco
founded in 1889 as Associated Charities by Katharine Felton
(1873-1940). FSASF is the oldest
nonsectarian, nonprofit charitable social-services provider in the
County of San Francisco.
It relies on contributions from government,
private donors, and private clients.
FSA focuses on strengthening families by providing caring,
effective, and innovative social
, with special emphasis on the needs of low-income
and the elderly
, and disabled people, thus
improving the quality of life for all San Franciscans.
The Agency has four divisions: Children, Youth, and Families
Division, Adult Services Division, Senior Services Division, Family
Developmental Center, and The Felton Institute. The programs
address some of San Francisco’s most critical issues: homelessness
, substance abuse
, and mental
. FSA’s programs have been recognized as national models
and have received the highest possible ratings from San Francisco’s
Department of Public Health.
- April 25, 1889:
Family Service Agency founded as the first general, nonsectarian
relief organization in the City.
- 1901: At the age of 28, Katharine
Felton is named FSA’S Executive Director, a remarkable
accomplishment for a woman of that time.
- 1906: After the 1906
San Francisco Earthquake, FSA directs San Francisco’s entire
Earthquake Relief Program and is temporarily merged with the Red Cross to provide
- 1907: In the crucible of the earthquake and fire, FSA develops
innovative solutions that are common practice today. FSA creates
the first employment agency in the
US, develops mental health counseling and foster care, and combines public and private
funds to allow single mother to remain at home.
- 1909: FSA inaugurates the "San Francisco Model of Care,"
combining public and private funds to provide cost-effective social
services, changing the way social services are provided
- 1932: In the aftermath of the stock market crash of 1929 and
the ensuing Great Depression, and
in reflection of its increasing role as an agency of social
welfare, Associated Charities changes its name to "Citizen's Agency
for Social Welfare."
- 1933: As a result of the Great
Depression, the Federal government requires that all federal
and state funds be expended by public agencies only. In compliance,
San Francisco creates a County Welfare Department that takes over
all family services previously handled by private agencies such as
Citizen's Agency for Social Welfare.
As a result, the Agency begins operating as a government contractor
in addition to private services.
- 1960: FSA expands its services to include job training,
preventive programs, and counseling services.
- 1965: FSA launches the Foster Grandparent Program (Senior Corps), providing low-income senior
volunteers with training and stipends to give support and attention
to children with special needs at sites throughout San
- 1977: The Developmental Disabilities Case Management Program
for children is begun. FSA initiates a Primary Therapeutic Program,
providing physical, occupational, and speech therapies.
- 1981: FSA develops the Teenage Pregnancy and Parenting Program
(TAPP), a case-management program for teenage parents.
- 1984: The Senior Companion Program (Senior Corps), bringing together mobile seniors
and their frail, homebound peers, is launched.
- 2006: The Felton Institute for
Excellence in Clinical Training is begun and named after FSA
founder Kitty Felton