1813 - 2013: Our Bicentennial Year – Celebrating our Past, Present and Future


Cornerstone Family Programs is one of very few organizations in the United States that can boast celebrating over 200 years of service!  In 1813, a group of women founded The Female Charitable Society to help the poor of Morristown, whose needs they felt were inadequately covered by New Jersey’s Poor Laws. The women began by aiding widows and fatherless children, many of whom were victims of the War of 1812. In keeping with the social philosophy of the time, relief consisted of material aid, such as wood, coal, clothing, wool and occasionally money. Operating funds came largely from dues, church collections, occasional donations and contributions.

The Female Charitable Society greatly enlarged the scope of its work and in 1913 became known as the Central Bureau of Social Service. Its staff centralized charitable work throughout the community, bringing about cooperation among the various churches, charitable societies and individuals to prevent duplication of services and aid.In the late 1920's, professional social workers took over direct service to the clients, paralleling national developments in the field of social work. By the time the United States emerged from the Great Depression, the government provided basic relief functions and the agency provided primarily counseling. The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children merged with the Society  in 1943, and  became Family and Children's Service of Morris County, soon changing the name to Family Service of Morris County in 1947.

In a continuing evolution to help families overcome life’s challenges, the organization merged again, this time with Morristown Neighborhood House in 2013.  At that time, the name was changed to Cornerstone Family Programs to better reflect the organization’s vision of building better lives and stronger communities . . . the same as the  founders intended over 200 years ago.

View our history video
Representative Rodney Frelinghuysen’s proclamation to Congress congratulating the organization  on the Bicentennial Anniversary.

The Bicentennial Committee has prepared an exciting year of events celebrating Cornerstone Family Programs’ 200 year history.  There is something for everyone in 2013!

Bicentennial Salute to Our Founders, Sunday, January 27, 2013.Congratulations to the ’Salute to Our Founders’ Committee for a truly beautiful launch to FSMC's Bicentennial Celebration held at The Presbyterian Church, located on the Morristown Green and site of the Founders’ vision.  Check out local press coverage in Morristown Green and Morristown Patch and view the  photo gallery.

Bicentennial Spring Ball, Saturday, April 13, 2013.  A huge thank you to the Bicentennial Ball Committee and friends of Cornerstone Family Programs who made this fundraising gala a gigantic success!  Congratulations to the exceptional group of local women honored:  Mary Pat Christie, First Lady of New Jersey; Janice Huff, Chief Meteorologist, NBC4 New York, and Rhonda Crichlow, Vice President & Head of US Diversity & Inclusion, Novartis Pharmaceuticals.  Check out the  photo gallery.
Professional Education Symposium:  An Evening with Edie Lutnick/Road to Resilience, May 28, 2013.  Author Edie Lutnick, Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Cantor Fitzgerald Relief Fund, discussed handling traumatic, life-changing events.

Family Celebration at Mayo Performing Arts Center, Fall 2013.  Stay tuned for details

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