This fall, “The Privilege Of Caring: A Community’s Response to Needy Children,” a free lecture series and traveling photo exhibit, will discuss the history of child welfare in Rhode Island.

In 1834, Harriet Ware set out to create the first agency in Rhode Island dedicated to the welfare of children. One hundred and seventy-five years later, child welfare is still changing in Rhode Island and Children’s Friend is still leading the way!

This photo exhibit spans 175 years of change and the lecture series will discuss how these changes have affected child welfare and offer solutions for today’s issues. The Rhode Island Council for the Humanities, the ADDD fund at the Rhode Island Foundation, and Gilbane Inc. are supporters of this project.


Children and Poverty
Wednesday, October 14, 7:00 p.m.
Alger Hall - Rhode Island College

Welcoming remarks: Sue Pearlmutter
Dean, School of Social Work at Rhode Island College
Opening remarks: Nancy LaChance
r.j. LaChance Advertising/Tin Can Alley

Sandra Enos, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of History and Social Sciences
presents Where a sacred responsibility exists: the history of caring for poor children in Rhode Island.

Kate Brewster, MSW
Executive Director, The Poverty Institute
presents Policies and politics and their impact on the lives of children living in poverty.

Moderator: Peter Lee, LICSW
CEO, John Hope Settlement House

Protecting Children
Sunday, October 18, 2:00 p.m.
Slater Mill

Opening remarks and Moderator:Rick Schwartz
Schwartz Talk

Kate Dunnigan
Professor of History, Community College of Rhode Island
presents Little bits of humanity: child labor in Rhode Island from 1800 -1938.

Lenette Azzi-Lessing, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Wheelock College
presents Child protection 2009: strengthening families and achieving permanency for children.

The Health of Children
Thursday, October 29, 7:00 p.m.
Aldrich House - Rhode Island Historical Society

Opening Remarks: Martha Newcomb
Chief Staff Attorney, Rhode Island Supreme Court; Board of Directors, Children's Friend

Richard Meckel, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, American Studies, Brown University
presents School dental clinics (1910 – 1950): an all but forgotten experiment in meeting a critical child health need.

Patricia Flanagan, M.D.
Chief of Clinical Affairs, Hasbro Children’s Hospital; Professor of Pediatrics, Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University;  Director, Teen Tot Program, Hasbro Children's Hospital; Board of Directors, Rhode Island Foundation, presents Poverty, health & childhood: chutes & ladders.

Moderator: Elizabeth Burke Bryant
Executive Director, Rhode Island KIDS COUNT

Education and Training
Wednesday, November 4, 7:00 p.m.
South Dining Room – Bryant University

Opening Remarks: Alfred K. Potter II, FSMPS
Senior Vice President, Chief Strategy Officer, Gilbane Building Company; Board of Directors, Children’s Friend

Richard Lobban, Ph.D.
Emeritus Professor of Anthropology, former Department Chair and former Director of African and Afro-American Studies at Rhode Island College
presents The Watchman Institute: Empowering the Minority Community.

Anna Cano-Morales
Associate Vice President for Grant Programs, The Rhode Island Foundation
presents All children can move ahead: strategies for all children.

Moderator: Shontay Delalue King
Intercultural Center Director, Bryant University

Women and Reform
Tuesday, November 17, 7:00 p.m.
House Chamber- Rhode Island State House

Opening Remarks: Doris Stearn Donovan
Board of Directors, Children’s Friend

Sandra Enos, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of History and Social Sciences
Kate Lohman
Actress, playing the role of Harriet Ware
present Harriet Ware: social work icon or social innovator?

Elizabeth Stevens, Ph.D.
Editor, Rhode Island History, Rhode Island Historical Society
presents A grave responsibility’: Elizabeth Buffum Chace and child welfare in Gilded Age Rhode Island.

Moderator: The Honorable Haiganush Bedrosian
Associate Justice, Rhode Island Family Court

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