Children in Need

Why children in need?.....(Who we are)

Like all of us, you probably share the joy a child experiences while participating in activities such as football, ballet lessons, soccer or preparing to join their friends at camp. The unfortunate truth is, there are many children who are unable to participate in these activities because they lack the necesary funds.

In our county alone there are countless children who have suffered abuse and are now living in foster homes or group homes. There are also children from low-income families whose parents barely earn enough to cover household expenses.

If you have children of your own or simply remember being a child, we ask you to imagine how low their self-esteem must be if they are unable to participate in extra curricular activities.

Children In Need is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization administered by staff of San Diego County, Health and Human Services Agency. Our mission is to provide the necessary financial support for enrichment activities to assist children's participation in sports, arts and cultural interaction. Further, it is our focus to ensure children are given the opportunity to mature into individuals who will succeed for themselves and for society.


Children In Need (CIN) was started in 1950 by the Assistant Director of the Department of Public Welfare for the County of San Diego. She wrote to a New York businessman, asking if he would be willing to contribute to this cause. He responded to her request and donated funds for a number of years.

She formed a committee to determine how the funds should be used. The committee, consisting mainly of social workers, felt that many children were unable to participate in activities, because they lived in foster or group homes, and funds were limited. Another reason was becasue the childrens' parents were unable to afford anything above the basic necessities. It was decided that CIN would help with enrichment activites for children in San Diego County.

Each time the New York businessman made a donation, the founder of CIN reported back how the money was being used. She identified the needs that were met without revealing the identity of the children.

CIN became incorporated in 1968 and received its non-profit status. By-laws were written and a Board of Directors created to administer the program. Today, the Board elects the Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson, the Secretary is voluntary, and the agency's fiscal department appoints the Treasuser and Cashier.

Because CIN is run entirely by employees of Health and Human Services, there are no administrative costs. The members volunteer to be part of CIN and 100% of the donations are used for the children.

How you can help

We accept monetary gifts to address the special needs of San Diego County's disadvantaged children. Generous contributions from many humanitarian donors and the dedicated efforts of our staff have improved the lives of thousands of deserving children.

There are no administrative costs. Those who work for Children In Need devote their time on a volunteer basis. Children In Need is supported entirely by private donations, and 100% of donations to Children In Need go directly to help the children. Yourcontribution to CIN is also tax deductible. Tax ID #: 95-6209152.

There are several ways you can help...

Do you know of a family that needs assistance?

Tell them about Children In Need. Many children are not participating in extra curricualar activities due to limited funding. (Income criteria must be determined unless a child has an active case with Health and Human Services).

Support our Fundraising Activities - Click here to go to the fundraising events page

Direct contribution Checks are welcome.
Make checks payable to Children iIn Need and send them to: 6950 Levant Street, San Diego, CA 92111. (THIS IS A MAILING ADDRESS ONLY).

Contact us

If you would like to know more about us or how you can help the children of San Diego: