aka Children's Friend   |   Providence, RI   |
GuideStar Charity Check


EIN: 05-0258819


Our Mission: Children’s Friend is the innovative leader in improving the well-being and healthy development of Rhode Island’s most vulnerable young children. Our Strategic Priority: Too many of the youngest and most vulnerable children in Rhode Island are experiencing devastating outcomes, including death, as a result of abuse and neglect. As stewards of the resources entrusted to us, Children’s Friend is realigning itself to proactively respond to this crisis.

Ruling year info


President & Chief Executive Officer

Mr. David Caprio

Main address

153 Summer St

Providence, RI 02903 USA

Show more contact info



Subject area info

Youth services

Population served info

Children and youth


NTEE code info

Children's and Youth Services (P30)

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Children's Friend is very aware of, and concerned with, the performance of our child welfare system in Rhode Island. We have all seen the too frequent headlines detailing poor outcomes for our vulnerable young children. As a result, Children's Friend has chosen to undertake the following “Strategic Priority” as the primary focus and direction of our work: Too many of the youngest and most vulnerable children in Rhode Island are experiencing devastating outcomes, including death, as a result of abuse and neglect. As stewards of the resource entrusted to us, Children’s Friend is realigning itself to proactively respond to this crisis.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

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

Agency Overview

Children’s Friend, Rhode Island’s first child-serving nonprofit agency, was founded in 1834 in Providence. Guided by our mission, Children’s Friend is the innovative leader in improving the well-being and healthy development of Rhode Island’s most vulnerable young children. We accomplish our mission by ensuring that our services are family-centered, seamless, and outcome-driven.

With sites in Providence, Pawtucket, and Central Falls, we provide a broad array of services for children and families. These include: clinical services; adoption; foster care; parent education; Early Intervention; nurse visiting for high-risk newborns; Nurse-Family Partnership; Healthy Families America; WIC; Early Head Start, Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships, and Head Start; State-funded Pre-K; a summer learning and enrichment program; child care, including therapeutic child care for children with special needs; and a variety of family support and family preservation programs.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

Where we work


Best Places to Work in Rhode Island 09 2009

Providence Business News

Best Places to Work in Rhode Island 2012

Providence Business News

Best Places to Work in Rhode Island 2015

Providence Business News

Best Places to Work in Rhode Island 2016

Providence Business News

Best Places to Work in Rhode Island 2017

Providence Business

Best Places to Work in Rhodel Island 2019

Providence Business News

Affiliations & memberships

Child Welfare League of America 2018

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

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

1. The number of deaths of Rhode Island’s youngest and most vulnerable children, attributable to abuse and neglect, will decrease.
2. The number of toxic stress indicators a child is exposed to will decrease as a result of engagement in services with Children’s Friend.
3. Three elements of our organizational capability related to the Strategic Priority (e.g. internal financial resources, human capital, external fund development, and services) will be identified and measurably improved.

Early in 2017, the agency's Strategic Committee decided to adopt processes and tools from the Real-Time Strategic Planning model (David LaPiana, The Nonprofit Strategy Revolution). This model was recommended by experts in strategy, business management, and nonprofit leadership. We later chose to adopt a “hybrid” strategic development path – incorporating elements of the Real-Time Strategic model and tried and true Children’s Friend past practices.

Children's Friend has adopted and uses a Business Model and Strategy Screen to guide it's work. making explicit what Children’s Friend does, the Business Model makes clear what Children’s Friend should not do. For example: what geographic areas we do not serve, what customers we do not target, what services we do not provide, and what sources of funding we do not have and do not seek.

Our areas of positive differentiation:
 1. A focus and expertise on our mission: serving the prenatal to 8 population
 2. Delivery of comprehensive and integrated services
 3. Financial strength and endowment
 4. Expert, committed, and diverse staff
 5. Roots in permanency

We also identified the following trends:
 1. Increase in knowledge base/science on prenatal to 8 population
 2. Increase in DCYF-involved families experiencing worse outcomes
 3. Increase in our clients’ vulnerability
 4. Increase need and dependency of clients on services
 5. Effect of newly-funded and newly designed programs impacting pre-existing programs
 6. Increasing expectations of funders and regulators regarding technology
 7. Increasing expectations of funders regarding quality data outcome reporting
 8. Money issues: federal and state funding, generational changes in philanthropic giving, potential drop in giving due to new tax law, and vacillation in corporate donations

Childrens Friend has a strong administrative infrastructure that supports over 400 employees. An active, diverse, 21 - member Board of Directors governs Childrens Friend, and meets nine times a year. The Board is responsible for determining matters of policy in support of the non-profit social welfare mission of Childrens Friend; and to protect and enhance the financial assets and resources of the agency. The agencys President and Chief Executive Officer supervises a five-member, highly experienced senior administrative leadership team. Childrens Friends staff members are skilled and diverse. Approximately 50 percent of staff members represent diverse ethnic groups. The agency is accredited by the Council on Accreditation, a national organization that establishes standards for high quality child and family services. The agencys Head Start and child care centers, as well as its adoption and foster care programs, are licensed by the RI Department for Children, Families and Youth; and the agencys Early Intervention program is certified by the RI Department of Human Services.

These principles also guide our work:

Family-Centered: Discovering child and family needs and working with families to best meet them. Providing opportunities for families to be meaningfully engaged in the design of services. Being committed to serving families of diverse cultures and lifestyles in a non-biased and non-judgmental way.

Seamless: Coordinating and integrating our services to ensure that families receive the support they need, regardless of point of entry to the agency. When our families face challenges outside our expertise, we partner with other high-quality organizations.

Outcome-Driven: Thoughtfully measuring the impact and effectiveness of our services. Engaging in ongoing learning and innovation to ensure we are offering effective services to children and families. Consistently identifying what we can improve, doing what we can do best, and measuring our self against national benchmarks.

Advocates: Taking a leadership role in educating policymakers and the public on the needs of the youngest and most vulnerable children, even when it means taking risks for the benefit of children.

Stewards: Taking responsibility for growing and sustaining our human and financial capital. Demonstrating respect and cultural sensitivity for our community, staff, and Board.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, We don’t have the right technology to collect and aggregate feedback efficiently, It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection, It is difficult to identify actionable feedback

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 5.70 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 0.3 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 35% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data


Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data


Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of CHILDREN'S FRIEND’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

Created in partnership with

Business model indicators

Profitability info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation -$332,575 $6,658,856 $2,740,491 $2,190,408 -$1,187,481
As % of expenses -1.1% 21.6% 9.3% 6.9% -3.4%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation -$674,990 $6,272,869 $2,292,919 $1,743,928 -$1,653,372
As % of expenses -2.3% 20.1% 7.6% 5.4% -4.7%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $30,609,042 $36,145,621 $31,392,787 $32,322,830 $38,362,104
Total revenue, % change over prior year 8.5% 18.1% -13.1% 3.0% 18.7%
Program services revenue 89.8% 80.9% 81.3% 11.4% 11.0%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 1.2% 1.2% 0.8% 0.7% 1.4%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 10.9% 78.5% 73.7%
All other grants and contributions 3.7% 16.1% 5.0% 6.6% 7.3%
Other revenue 5.3% 1.8% 2.1% 2.8% 6.6%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $28,945,198 $30,787,479 $29,569,851 $31,629,648 $34,515,763
Total expenses, % change over prior year 4.4% 6.4% -4.0% 7.0% 9.1%
Personnel 67.9% 68.6% 74.2% 70.3% 68.8%
Professional fees 5.1% 8.6% 9.3% 8.5% 11.4%
Occupancy 5.3% 5.2% 4.8% 9.7% 8.0%
Interest 0.2% 0.2% 0.0% 0.1% 0.1%
Pass-through 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other expenses 21.6% 17.4% 11.7% 11.4% 11.8%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Total expenses (after depreciation) $29,287,613 $31,173,466 $30,017,423 $32,076,128 $34,981,654
One month of savings $2,412,100 $2,565,623 $2,464,154 $2,635,804 $2,876,314
Debt principal payment $102,996 $301,634 $0 $1,220,061 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $5,736,006 $0 $672,536 $562,721
Total full costs (estimated) $31,802,709 $39,776,729 $32,481,577 $36,604,529 $38,420,689

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Months of cash 0.1 0.1 0.8 0.9 0.4
Months of cash and investments 8.1 8.5 9.8 10.2 7.2
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 3.7 3.7 4.6 4.8 3.8
Balance sheet composition info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Cash $312,639 $309,731 $1,920,955 $2,388,216 $1,179,232
Investments $19,137,635 $21,598,348 $22,325,657 $24,541,568 $19,515,144
Receivables $3,198,780 $3,239,125 $5,043,693 $3,383,507 $7,309,005
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $10,203,659 $15,889,665 $16,100,835 $16,773,371 $17,336,092
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 48.1% 33.0% 35.3% 36.6% 38.1%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 12.9% 9.0% 10.5% 6.6% 15.1%
Unrestricted net assets $13,031,263 $19,304,132 $21,597,051 $23,340,979 $21,687,607
Temporarily restricted net assets $2,317,173 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $9,113,900 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $11,431,073 $13,288,339 $14,117,649 $15,384,668 $13,596,928
Total net assets $24,462,336 $32,592,471 $35,714,700 $38,725,647 $35,284,535

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Material data errors No No No No No


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

Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization

President & Chief Executive Officer

Mr. David Caprio

David Caprio, President and Chief Executive Officer, holds a master’s degree in Business Administration, has over 25 years of experience in human services administration, and has overall administrative responsibility for the agency.

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990


Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization


Highest paid employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of highest paid employee data for this organization


Board of directors
as of 12/05/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
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Mark Griffin

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Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    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? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 12/5/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data


No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 11/13/2019

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.


Fiscal year ending
There are no fundraisers recorded for this organization.