Human Services

Mary Graham Childrens Shelter Foundation

Advocate, Educate, Foster, Inspire

aka Mary Graham Children’s Foundation

Stockton, CA


Once our foster youth turn 18 years old and complete high school, they can no longer stay in the foster care system. Many of them are forced to leave and enter a world where they have no family to fall back on, no job or housing and a very limited education and job skills. Without support, many of these youth fall on continued hard times ending up homeless, struggling with depression and or in trouble with the law. For many, our Foundation is their last line of defense.

Ruling Year


Principal Officer

Emily Ballus

Main Address

PO Box 792

Stockton, CA 95201 USA


Foster Youth, Youth, Emancipation, Emancipated, Scholarship, education, college, living expenses, Trade school, transition, homelessness, community college





Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Foster Care (P32)

Scholarships, Student Financial Aid, Awards (B82)

Educational Services and Schools - Other (B90)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Programs + Results

What we aim to solve

After foster care, former foster youth are more likely than their non-foster peers to become homeless, be less educated, incarcerated and unemployed. Taken away form their parents for abuse, neglect, or abandonment, and through no fault of their own, these foster youth are set up to fail long-term. These former foster youth fail in life in significant numbers. But we know education and vocational training can help mitigate these sobering statistics, so Mary Graham Children's Foundation provides : - scholarships for college and trade school training for foster youth transitioning into adulthood - funding for life needs to bridge the gap between being able to attend college or training or having to work menial jobs to pay for the basics - provide caring adult mentors to help these youth navigate from their teenage years into adulthood

Our Sustainable Development Goals

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.


Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Youth Programs

Where we work

Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

How will they know if they are making progress?

What have they accomplished so far and what's next?

The Mary Graham Children's Foundation goals are: - To raise funding to provide foster youth transitioning out of foster care post-high school education and vocational training - Provide caring adult mentors to help guide foster youth in their transition from teenager into adulthood - Engage foster youth in educational and vocational opportunities - Bridge financial gaps foster youth may have to be successful in college or trade school

The Mary Graham Children's Foundation provides: - Special events. The Foundation produces three special events a year to raise funds for foster youth - Grants. The Foundation staff seek, write and secure grants for funding - Donations. The Foundation solicits donations all year long - Provide success stories of graduates to justify all funding mechanisms

The Mary Graham Children's Foundation board and executive director, the only employee, work side-by-side to produce events, generate donor contacts, solicit local family foundation grants, and donate themselves.

We know if we are making progress through: - More students in the Mary Graham program graduating from college or vocational training - More funds raised to provide more scholarships - Foster youth successfully obtain a degree or certificate and find gainful employment

We have moved the needle locally for our foster youth in the Mary Graham program. Nationally, only about 3 percent of former foster youth graduate from college. At Mary Graham, we are graduating 25 percent, or 8 times the national average! Furthermore, we have raised more money in the last two years to send more youth to college and training. What's Next: About 80 youth transition out of foster care in our county each year. We reach about 10 students per year. We'd like to increase that to 40 students per year, which is 55 percent of the populations. And 55 percent of the general population complete college. We'd like to give foster youth the same opportunities as their non-foster peers to be successful and transition from often tragic childhoods into triumphant adults for the rest of their lives.

External Reviews


Mary Graham Childrens Shelter Foundation

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  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2018, 2017 and 2016
  • A Pro report is also available for this organization.

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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Need more info?

FREE: Gain immediate access to the following:

  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2018, 2017 and 2016
  • A Pro report is also available for this organization.

See what's included

Board Leadership Practices

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Not Applicable


Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Not Applicable


Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Not Applicable


Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

Not Applicable


Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?

Not Applicable