|History of Seton Home|
Seton Home began in the late 1970s as a dream which, when realized, would meet a real need in San Antonio and the surrounding areas. At that time, there was no facility that could readily meet the specific needs of pregnant teenagers in crisis who wanted to keep and parent their child. To many of these teens who were sleeping on park benches, in abandoned cars, and on the floors and couches of friends' homes, Seton Home offered a warm and secure place to stay. In 1977, the Archdiocesan Council of Catholic Women (ACCW) in San Antonio hosted the organization's National Convention. When it was over, the ladies realized they had made a profit and set aside $10,000 for seed money to create a home for pregnant teenagers. Permission was soon granted by Archbishop Francis J. Furey to establish such a home.
In October 1980, Archbishop Patrick Flores gave the ACCW eighteen rooms on the second floor of a building at 309 N. Alamo Street to be used as the home. For six months, the ACCW women, Knights of Columbus Council 5262, and other groups worked together to clean, remodel, paint and furnish the facility. All money came from concerned citizens' private donations. Seton Home, named in honor of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, officially opened its doors on March 5, 1981, with three in-house residents who were in desperate need. The agency provided services in that location until 1987.
In response to a growing need for services to homeless pregnant teens in 1987, the Archdiocese gave the agency use of three acres at 1115 Mission Road, which is our current location. Funds were raised to build two dorm-style maternity cottages and a small administrative building. This move increased the agency's capacity to 16 beds, which was a ray of hope for homeless, pregnant moms who could stay at the agency until two months after the delivery of their child.
However, the Board of Governors and staff quickly recognized that the length of time teen moms were served was not adequate. The hard reality was that homeless, pregnant teens without resources in our care became homeless teen mothers with an infant. And our current program needed to be extended if Seton Home were to truly impact their lives. So the board responded by planning and implementing a capital campaign to build a Transitional Living Cottage on campus that would contain eight efficiency apartments and a staff office. Fr. Collins was instrumental in leading that campaign which was completed in 1997 with the opening of our Transitional Living Cottage. This cottage increased our capacity to 24.
Still, in spite of the agency's great efforts of evolving to meet the needs of our population, the clients needs continued to evolve. The agency found an increasing need for services to teens who were already parenting but were homeless and without resources. As a result, in 2001 the Board authorized its largest capital campaign effort in the agency's history--$8 million! In the spring of 2006, following a successful capital campaign, the capacity of Seton Home nearly doubled from 24 to 40 beds for teen mothers and their babies with the opening of the newly constructed 24-unit transitional living facility. Our on-campus day care also moved to a new building on campus which accommodates 35 infants and toddlers.
Seton Home is proud of the progress that is evident in the years that have passed since our doors opened in 1981. With your help we will continue to grow and give new hope to homeless teen mothers and their children.
Seton Home Happenings...
5th Annual Dr. Leslie Parks Tribute to Motherhood Luncheon