FRIENDS Association for Children

FRIENDS Association for Children


Whether you’re off today or not is beside the point—Let’s get to work. Check out and support non-profits right here in RVA, today and every day 🔽
Black Lives Matter 804
Enrichmond Foundation
FRIENDS Association for Children
Girls For A Change
History Is Illuminating
Mending Walls RVA
Urban League of Greater Richmond: Young Professionals
Virginia NAACP
Black History Museum & Cultural Center
Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities
Virginia Poverty Law Center
Voices for Virginia's Children
100 Black Men of Central Virginia
Children at FRIENDS Association for Children enjoyed story time with First Lady of Virginia Pamela Northam last week to celebrate the hard work of all early care teachers in Virginia. We want to thank all of our partners that helped to make this possible and appreciate all of the support from the Governor of Virginia to lift up this important work.
On Friday, I joined FRIENDS Association for Children to celebrate their 150th anniversary.

Born enslaved, Lucy Goode Brooks saw her own children sold and founded Friends as an orphanage in Jackson Ward in 1871.

Today they operate two multi-service child development centers in Richmond. Thank you for your work for generations of children!
We really need volunteers to partner with our friends at FRIENDS Association for Children in Gilpin Court.

Join us and RSVP with the link below.
We were delighted to take part in a community walk around Gilpin Court yesterday with Richmond Police Department, FRIENDS Association for Children, Councilwoman Ann-Frances Lambert, and other community members. Lifers handed out masks, hygiene packs, and information about our programs.
The L. Douglas Wilder School of Government & Public Affairs will honor alum John Purnell Jr. (M.S.W.’64/SW; M.P.A.’78/GPA) on Wednesday, April 15, with the Grace E. Harris Leadership Award as part of its 14th annual Excellence in Virginia Government Awards. Purnell was executive director of the FRIENDS Association for Children for over 40 years. Watch to learn more about his ongoing support for Friends.
The Grace E. Harris Leadership Award recognizes an individual Virginian whose career represents the highest values of public service and citizenship and who has made a substantial contribution to the good of the commonwealth and the community.

This year’s honoree, John C. Purnell, Jr. came to the FRIENDS Association for Children in April 1970. As its executive director for over 40 years, John skillfully helped at-risk children and families overcome prejudice, economic disparity, nutritional shortcomings, and other challenges for those growing up in Richmond, Henrico and Chesterfield’s most difficult neighborhoods. Join us as we celebrate all seven honorees at this year’s 14th Excellence in Virginia Government Awards virtual ceremony on April 15. Register now:
Together we win! ❤️ Every week in 2021 we will award a local charity from a community in which we operate a donation of $1,000. This week's recipient is FRIENDS Association for Children.

Rosie's Gives Back has made donations of more than $1,185,000 and logged over 1,100 service hours in local Virginia communities.

Learn more here:
We want to thank M4K Richmond for another amazing Mustaches for Kids event! We were blown away by their 2020 growing season where they raised $500k in donations for Greater Richmond SCAN (Stop Child Abuse Now), Children's Hospital of Richmond at VCU, SpeakUp 5K / Cameron K. Gallagher Foundation, FRIENDS Association for Children, The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club Richmond, Richmond Friends of the Homeless, and us.

Thanks to this amazing group of over 200 guys, we're able to provide 160,000 meals to children in need. This longtime event comes around every year in November. We hope you'll learn more about them and the organizations they support.

Thank you M4K Richmond -- we love your hairy mugs and your great big hearts!
If any of the teachers at Friends are looking to make some extra cash today we need a sitter from now until 4pm. My boys are 3 yr old Hank and 1yr old Charlie from RLT. We live in Church Hill. Please let me know if you are able. Thank you.
If any of the teachers at Friends are looking to make some extra cash today, I need a sitter for our two boys age 3 and 1 from now until 4pm (Hank and Charlie from RLT). We live in Church Hill. Please send me a message if you are able!
Great news for our partners at FRIENDS Association for Children. We appreciate their support for children and families. Thanks WTVR CBS 6 News for recognizing the great work happening in our child care centers to support virtual learning.

FRIENDS has served Richmond families since 1871. Today, we offer childcare, youth development, fami

Operating as usual

FRIENDS 2022 Winter Show 12/04/2022

FRIENDS 2022 Winter Show

We are so pleased to share the return of FRIENDS' annual Holiday Program. Earlier today we were joined by family & friends for this annual tradition and the kids were incredible.

Thank you to all the teachers, staff, volunteers and families that made this event possible.

We invite you all to share this joyful performance with your families and friends this holiday season.

FRIENDS 2022 Winter Show Join FRIENDS Association for Children's 2022 Winter Show featuring music and dancing by our Preschool and Youth Development students. Happy Holidays!

Photos from FRIENDS Association for Children's post 12/03/2022

Tonight, FRIENDS is at the annual M4K Richmond 'Stache Bash, celebrating another 'No Shave November ' to raise money for children's charities in greater Richmond.

As always, a huge thanks to all of the Tom Sellecks, Ron Burgundys, Ted Lassos, and Burt Reynolds who grew mustaches to support FRIENDS and our community of non-profits. An even bigger thanks to all who donated.

Together $850,000 was raised for 21 children's charities.


Parents, don't forget about our Holiday Concert THIS SATURDAY! Check out the flyer for important details and note the early arrival times for students participating. See you there!

Volunteer | FRIENDS Association for Children 11/29/2022

Volunteer | FRIENDS Association for Children

Giving Tuesday: Volunteering!

Giving your time can often be just as valuable as a donation! Organizations like FRIENDS rely on volunteers to help our programs grow and thrive.

Visit to learn more about our volunteer opportunities and sign up to start a conversation!

Volunteer | FRIENDS Association for Children FRIENDS Association for Children – Volunteer Program Volunteers at FRIENDS Association for Children enrich the work we do and touch the lives of the children and families we serve. Volunteers provide basic, yet vital support to our children which increases the capacity and effectiveness of our tea...


Giving Tuesday: Sustaining Gifts

FRIENDS, like many charitable organizations rely on gifts from individuals to deliver high-quality Early Child Development, Preschool, and Youth Development Programs for our community.

In recent years FRIENDS has seen a number of donors opt to give small monthly gifts instead of 1 lump sum during the holidays. The sustaining gift helps to provide regular, reliable support for charitable programs while reducing the out-of-pocket impact of a larger one-time gift.

If a sustaining gift sounds right for you, you can go to click the PayPal button and check the "Make This a Monthly Donation" box.

As always, thank you for supporting charities you love!


Today is Giving Tuesday, a day to step away from the commercialsm of "Black Friday", "Cyber Monday", and the onslaught of holiday shopping ads that have most certainly been filling your mailbox for weeks. Today is a day to think about your community and search your heart for the causes you care about and support them with a gift.

Throughout the day we'll share different ways that you can support FRIENDS, and ideas on how you can support other non-profits you love. We hope that you'll like and share these ideas, and if you're able find a way to give that makes the most sense for you and your family.


Happy Thanksgiving to all of our families, friends, and community partners.

On this day we say thanks to each of you that have made it possible for FRIENDS to serve our community for over 150 years. We wish you all the best, today and every day. Happy Thanksgiving!


FRIENDS John C. Purnell Center located in Gilpin Court will remain closed for the remainder of this week due to ongoing critical maintenance and the Thanksgiving Holiday.

Unfortunately, that means that we'll have to postpone the planned family luncheon scheduled at that center for tomorrow (11/22).

The Robert L Taylor Center in Church Hill is unaffected by this maintenance and will remain open on Tuesday (11/22) and Wednesday (11/23). The Taylor Center is closed for the Thanksgiving Holiday on Thursday (11/24) and Friday (11/25).

We apologize for this inconvience, but want everyone to know that hold the safety of our children, families, and staff as our first priority. We will continue to update this page as our maintenance work is completed.

We wish you all a very happy Thanksgiving.


Tomorrow, Monday November 21st, FRIENDS' John C. Purnell Center in Gilpin Court will be closed for emergency maintenance.

The Robert L Taylor Center in Church Hill is unaffected by this maintenance and will open at regular hours (6am-6pm).

Please check back on Facebook on Monday afternoon for updates regarding Tuesday.

Photos from FRIENDS Association for Children's post 11/04/2022

We bid Mrs. Cheryl Scott a fond farewell and best wishes on her retirement! We will miss you!


What's inside a pumpkin?

Photos from FRIENDS Association for Children's post 10/31/2022

Happy Harvest!

Photos from FRIENDS Association for Children's post 10/28/2022

FRIENDS celebrates our 8th Annual Pink Out Day to show support and increase awareness of breast cancer. The children, teaching staff, and support staff did a great job "pinking out"! The classroom decorations and activities for kids were great!

Photos from FRIENDS Association for Children's post 10/28/2022

We've had a great week of Fall festivities, including a trip to the pumpkin patch! Pumpkins with bumps, big pumpkins, small pumpkins, green pumpkins, white pumpkins...something for everyone! We're thankful for the help of volunteers from UR Alpha Phi Omega at UR! In addition to the great pumpkin patch, the kids enjoyed a hay ride and other spooky surprises The Pumpkin Patch-Gallmeyer Farms!


VCU is holding it's Annual Chili Cook-Off Fundraiser today! Proceeds benefit FRIENDS Association for Children. Come by and have an awesome lunch and vote on the best chili!


Please join us in welcoming Ayesha Dysick as a Social Worker to our staff!

Photos from FRIENDS Association for Children's post 10/11/2022

Thank you to Sam’s Club for coming out on your Day of Service to improve our playground at FRIENDS Robert L. Taylor Childcare Center!


FRIENDS bids a fond farewell to Ms. Hernandez as she embarks on a new career! Best wishes and we will miss you!!!


🍲 It's that time of year again! We will host the annual chili cook-off fundraiser to benefit FRIENDS Association for Children on Oct. 28. We need chefs and welcome all kinds of chili recipes, including turkey, bean less and vegetarian!

📲 If you think you have what it takes to become a chili champion, email [email protected] to sign up and get more information. 🤩 VCU / VCU Health students, faculty, staff, significant others and relatives are welcome to sign up as chefs. There is no entry fee for chefs, just fame and glory.

Photos from FRIENDS Association for Children's post 09/27/2022

FRIENDS is continuing our 150th Anniversary celebration this month by uniting our corporate partners with the needs of non-profit partners across greater Richmond.

Today, we’re celebrating the generosity of Bank of America teammates at the Villa Park Campus who put together an incredible supply drive for Children's Home Society of Virginia If you don’t know them, Children’s Home Society of Virginia is a full-service, private, nonprofit 501(c)(3), non-sectarian licensed child-placing agency, and one of Virginia’s oldest adoption agencies (122 years).

The mission of Children’s Home Society of Virginia is to build strong permanent families and lifelong relationships for Virginia’s at-risk children and youth. To date, CHSVA has served nearly 16,000 Virginia children, youth, and families.

Thank you to Bank of America for supporting CHS Virginia, FRIENDS, and Children & Families across the Commonwealth.

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Photos from Hope For Learning's post 09/02/2022

Photos from Hope For Learning's post

Photos from Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Richmond's post 09/02/2022

Photos from Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Richmond's post


FRIENDS is celebrating our 150th Anniversary this quarter with a celebration of volunteerism. In preparation for the start of school this week our friends from Genworth dropped off school supplies for our classrooms and our kids. It's an incredibly generous gift and one that speaks volumes about people and spirit of community at Genworth. We are so lucky to have them as partners, and we appreciate their support of our school & community.

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Are you a musically talented individual who loves working with kids and wants to gain experience teaching private music lessons in the RVA community? FRIENDS is looking for passionate volunteer teachers to join our Music and Performing Arts team this fall and spring! Check out the flyer below for more information.

Photos from FRIENDS Association for Children's post 06/25/2022

We're doing it live at Abner Clay Park RIGHT NOW! GET here by 6 and get in on the fun!

With Bon Secours Richmond Health System , Central Virginia Waste Management Authority M4K Richmond , Capital One , The Richmond Ambulance Authority , Richmond Police Department , Aramark and more!!!

Photos from FRIENDS Association for Children's post 06/25/2022

We’re having a great time at Abner Clay park! Come on out!


Congratulations to Highland Springs 2022 graduate, Nachay Briggs! Nachay was part of our Youth program for a few years!


Congratulations Deven Tompkins! From FRIENDS graduation in 2009 to Highland Springs 2022!


Congratulations and many, many, thanks to Ms. Linda Crafton on 45 years of teaching preschool at FRIENDS Association for Children!


Congratulations and many, many, thanks to Ms. Linda Crafton on 45 years of teaching preschool at FRIENDS Association for Children!

Photos from Mayor Levar Stoney's post 05/20/2022

Photos from Mayor Levar Stoney's post


Happy Graduation Day to the Preschool Class of 2022!


Learning about eggs!


What an incredible night of music, history, and comedy! We're having a great time with Glenroy Bailey, Comedian Micah "Bam-Bamm" White , and more.

Thanks to our incredibly generous Board if Trustees, who are matching gifts up to $12,500 tonight (until midnight).

If you weren't able to join us tonight, consider a gift that will help to meet that match! Visit to celebrate our past and secure our future.

Videos (show all)

Learning about eggs!
We love you Ms. Lisa!
What does the inside of a pumpkin feel like?
Whats on the inside?
Holiday Message
FRIENDS - Christmas Parade
FRIENDS 2020 Election - Mrs. Crafton's Introduction
Fun Friday Dance Moves





1004 Street John St
Richmond, VA

Opening Hours

Monday 6am - 6pm
Tuesday 6am - 6pm
Wednesday 6am - 6pm
Thursday 6am - 6pm
Friday 6am - 6pm

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