Catherine's Center for Children traces its origin to the
Daughters of Charity who, in 1846, came to Albany to care for
children who had been orphaned as a result of the cholera
epidemic. These Sisters assumed responsibility for the care of
children at Saint Vincent's Orphan Asylum, 106 Elm Street,
Albany. The Daughters of Charity had been established in the
17th century in France by Vincent de Paul for the service of the
there was an outbreak of "sore eyes" among the younger
children at Saint Vincent's Orphan Asylum, and physicians
recommended that the sick children be separated from the well
children. The managers of the Asylum obtained a nearby building
known as the Schuyler Mansion, and the young sick children and
some of the sisters moved into the Mansion.
New York State had taken over the historic Schuyler Mansion, and
the program for the young children moved to 30 North Main
Avenue. Thirty North Main was the new facility, built through
the generosity of Anthony N. Brady. The agency became known as
The Maternity Hospital and Infant Home of Albany. The services
included a maternity hospital (Brady Maternity), and an infant
the infant home's name was changed to St. Catherine's Infant
Home in honor of Saint Catherine LaBoure, a French Daughter of
Charity. The focus of service at the time was residential care
of children from birth to age six, day nursery services, and a
child care technician training program.
1966 and 1971, St. Catherine's underwent a period of study and
reorganization. In 1971, the agency's name was changed to St.
Catherine's Center for Children, and it became a multi-service
agency for children and their families.
recent years, St. Catherine's has made several program and
organizational changes in response to societal problems such as
child abuse and neglect, family instability, homelessness, etc.
At the present time, St. Catherine's offers a continuum of
services which include the following:
Community Based Services
R & E May School/Day
Foster Family Programs
Byron Center for Loss and
Marillac Homeless Family Program
the agency, which we now know as St. Catherine's Center for
Children, has undergone several changes in location, name, and
program design since those children with "sore eyes"
moved into the Schuyler Mansion in 1886, what has remained
constant has been a commitment to serve needy children and
families in the Albany area. This commitment is shared by the
Board of Directors, the staff, and all those who have supported
the work of the agency over the years.