Crisis Nursery

The Sacramento Children’s Home operates Sacramento County’s only Crisis Nursery. Our mission is to prevent child abuse and neglect by providing support to families at times of crisis. The Sacramento Crisis Nursery is a family-strengthening program where parents can bring their children, ages 0-5 for emergency childcare or overnight care during stressful or difficult times.

  • Voluntary, confidential and free
  • Care provided 24 hours a day, 365 days a year
  • Children are cared for in a safe, loving and homelike environment
  • Age-appropriate play and learning activities
  • Crisis Intervention services and case management support for the family
  • Two locations: South Sacramento & North Sacramento
  • Care provided to children newborn to five (ages 0-5)

We are here if you need help caring for your children for any reason.

  • A sudden illness or accident
  • Feelings of desperation or helplessness
  • Emotional distress or frustration
  • Domestic violence
  • Homelessness
  • Drug or alcohol treatment
  • A medical or mental health situation
  • Employment or housing situation

Children may stay at the nurseries for up to 30 days. Each child has his or her own bed and is provided with all the essentials while they are staying at the Nursery, including clothing and shoes, diapers and formula. Nutritious homemade meals and snacks are served family-style. Scheduled age-appropriate learning activities, playtime, mealtimes, and bedtime assist in stabilizing the child’s daily experience. The ultimate goal of our program is to keep families together and reduce the number of young children that enter into the foster care system.

Early-Learning Program

The Sacramento Crisis Nursery Program is licensed by Community Care Licensing. We believe that children are active learners and should have the opportunity to develop to their full potential.

  • A daily schedule includes age-appropriate early learning activities like numbers, letters, colors, and other basics, with time built in for arts and crafts, free time, storytime, nap time, snacks and all meals
  • Rooms are set up to promote age-appropriate social interactions
  • Staff model appropriate behavior and use activities to help children develop social skills like empathy, cooperation, respect and kindness
  • Staff encourage children to think through problems and find appropriate solutions

Case Management

Case managers provide parents and caregivers with support during times of crisis or stress, when their children are at the Crisis Nurseries. In order to help parents manage their situation and be better able to care for their young children, the case managers develop a plan in conjunction with the parents and provide them with community resources and referrals to help address all of their needs. We focus our efforts on service delivery, program consultation, and innovation.

  • Housing resources
  • Mental health/counseling services
  • Substance abuse services
  • Domestic violence intervention support
  • Childcare resources
  • Legal services
  • Parenting classes
  • Employment opportunities

Case managers also help coordinate and manage medical and mental health services for children while they are at the Nurseries. In addition, case managers arrange transportation services for various reasons including:

  • Medical appointments
  • Court dates
  • Counseling sessions
  • Job interviews
  • Housing appointments
  • Travel to and from the Nursery

Success Stories

Brittany called the Crisis Nursery in desperation. She had come to Sacramento to make a fresh start only to have her housing fall through. None of Brittany’s friends in the area were able to take her or her two young children in. Thankfully, the Crisis Nursery was there to give her kids a safe, nurturing place to stay while she worked to better her situation. The kids especially enjoyed playing outside, riding in the wagon, and drawing with chalk. Brittany visited her children often while she searched for permanent childcare and a new home, spending quality time with her kids whenever she could. Meanwhile, Crisis Nursery staff put Brittany in touch with vital community resources to help her find safe, stable housing. At the end of the kids’ stay, Brittany was overjoyed to have the children come to their new home. She was ready to begin her new life in Sacramento, and she thanked the Crisis Nursery staff for taking such good care of her children in her time of need.
“William & Carter”
13-month old Carter and his father, William, were caught in an overwhelming situation. Carter’s mother was unstable, battling drug abuse and mental health issues. One day, she left Carter with William, giving no word of when or if she would return. William was completely unprepared to care for a child on his own, and he knew he needed help. With no childcare or family support, he risked losing his job if he took time off to care for his son. To make matters more difficult, Carter’s mother did not leave William with any clothing, diapers, or formula. William had no idea where to turn. Thankfully, a DHA worker referred him to the Sacramento Crisis Nursery Program. First and foremost, the Crisis Nursery provided free, emergency childcare for Carter, allowing William to maintain his employment while securing alternative care. However, William and Carter both benefitted from Crisis Nursery services in ways they couldn’t have imagined when they first arrived. Carter was unable to walk or stand on his own, and he had difficulty communicating, which caused him to become frustrated. Crisis Nursery staff were patient and nurturing, using a combination of words and gestures to aid communication. They gave Carter lots of floor time and appropriate walking toys to help him become more mobile, and they held his hand as they encouraged him to take his first steps. While he was making great strides to better his situation, William was struggling with being a single father with no family. He confided in his Case Manager that he had been experiencing loneliness and depression. William’s Case Manager referred him to community resources, including a Family Resource Center, where he could find social support and connect with other single fathers in similar situations. Today, Carter is walking and running on his own, and he loves to sing songs with his father. William still occasionally uses the Crisis Nursery when he needs help, but his situation and his relationship with his son are much improved. Because of the Sacramento Crisis Nursery Program, William knows he is not alone and is able to enjoy being a father.

Crisis Nursery Sustainers Circle

To care for our community’s most vulnerable children, we rely on support from community members like you. By becoming a monthly sustainer, you empower us to provide a safe haven for children throughout the Sacramento area, offering respite to parents during times of crisis, and building a strong support system for the future. Every dollar goes directly toward giving our most vulnerable children a safe place to stay when they need it most.

Monthly Tours

Crisis Nursery tours will be held once per month as follows:

  • First Thursday at 10:00am | South Crisis Nursery
  • Second Friday at 10:00am | North Crisis Nursery

RSVP is required. Please email or call (916) 290-8201.

Each tour lasts approximately 30 minutes and includes some outdoor portions. Due to the size and structure of our nurseries, we would like to limit nursery tours to 10 individuals or less. Due to privacy and safety restrictions, tour attendees should be 18 or older, and tour groups are not allowed to take pictures of the children. Thank you for understanding.

Friends of the Crisis Nurseries

The Friends of the Crisis Nurseries is a group of long-term, dedicated volunteers whose mission to maintain the success of the Crisis Nursery, spread awareness, and raise funds. To learn more about the Friends and how to join the group, click here.

Additional Funding

Funding for Sacramento Children’s Home Crisis Nursery Program is partially provided by the First 5 Sacramento Commission which uses Proposition 10 (tobacco tax) funds to support the healthy development of children ages zero to five. Additional information about the First 5 Sacramento Commission is online at or by calling (916) 876-5865.

First 5