Finding aid for the El Nido Services and Lodges records 0409

Finding aid prepared by Rose Roberto
USC Libraries Special Collections
Doheny Memorial Library 206
3550 Trousdale Parkway
Los Angeles, California, 90089-0189
2000 January 4

Title: El Nido Services and Lodges records
Collection number: 0409
Contributing Institution: USC Libraries Special Collections
Language of Material: English
Physical Description: 2.5 Linear feet 2 boxes
Date (inclusive): 1932-1986 (bulk 1970s-1980s)
Abstract: The El Nido Services and Lodges records cover the practical details of El Nido's operations, 1930-1980, documenting its real estate management, zoning battles, tax questions, insurance and "disaster preparedness" provisions, and occasional personnel problems of this social service agency. Originally a project of the Los Angeles Section of the National Council of Jewish Women, the Section established a Children's Bureau in Los Angeles in 1925, and three years later built a camp for underprivileged and "pre-tubercular" girls in Laurel Canyon. Control of El Nido eventually passed to the Council of Jewish Women of Los Angeles, Inc., and during the 1970s, with the increasing diversity of Los Angeles' communities, control of El Nido passed from the Section to a new Board of Directors. By 1981, the El Nido organization that these records document no longer existed; it became known, in 1981, as Children, Youth and Parent Counseling.
creator: El Nido Services (Los Angeles, Calif.).
creator: National Council of Jewish Women. Los Angeles Section.


El Nido Family Centers.

Scope and Content

The El Nido Services and Lodges records, 1930 to 1980, consist of administrative records, blueprints, epehemera and photographs, that document the day to day activities of this social service organization. The records cover the practical details of El Nido's operations in all phases of its existence during this period. Documented are its real estate management, zoning battles, tax questions, insurance and "disaster preparedness" provisions, and occasional personnel problems.

Administrative history

El Nido was originally a project of the Los Angeles Section of the National Council of Jewish Women. This group established a Children's Bureau in Los Angeles in 1925, and three years later built a camp/residential center for underprivileged and "pe-tubercular" girls in Laurel Canyon. From 1933 until the early 1940s, the residential center served girls living in the Los Angeles area who had behavioral problems, or who required health service for such problems as tuberculosis or eating disorders, and who were in need of "special vocational guidance." At some point thereafter, operation of the Children's Bureau passed to the Council of Jewish Women of Los Angeles, Inc. This California corporation, with identical membership to the Los Angeles Section of the National Council of Jewish Women, may have been organized as a parallel agency to facilitate local fund raising and participation in the Los Angeles Community Chest.
During World War II and its aftermath the Los Angeles Jewish Women's Council was particularly concerned with the welfare of emigres from Nazi oppression in Europe. The Children's Bureau Agency used the Laurel Canyon center as a temporary Jewish refugee center for children going into the American foster care system and for young immigrant single mothers or widows with young children adapting to the United States as their new home. Working with the National Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society and the Los Angeles Emigre Service, the Agency created and ran "Americanization and Naturalization programs" on behalf of their foreign clients.
In 1954, the Council's articles of incorporation stated its purpose "to sponsor a social agency carrying on a program of social service in the fields of child guidance, service to the foreign born, and such other social service programs as the Los Angeles Section of the National Council of Jewish Women shall agree upon." By the mid 1950s most Jewish refugees bound for Los Angeles had arrived and been given full assistance by the Council, and the agency's attention began to focus exclusively on disadvantaged adolescent girls. During the 1960s and 1970s, due to the rapidly increasing ethnic diversity of Los Angeles communities, the Children's Bureau Agency began servicing disadvantaged adolsescent girls, some with a history of violence, many of whom were wards of the local Court System, with residential therapy and counseling services. Their problems ranged from such school difficulties as truancy, to criminal activities such as prostitution, gang membership, and substance abuse. In addition, the purposes of the Los Angeles Council of Jewish Women began to diverge from those of its originator, the National Council of Jewish Women. El Nido had always been non-sectarian in its staffing and service policies, but in the 1970s the rapidly increasing ethnic diversity of the communities in which it operated created a need for an ethnically and culturally diverse board of directors rather than with one with membership drawn solely from the Los Angeles Section of the National Council of Jewish Women. The complicated split between "the Section" and El Nido, finalized in 1978, freed the agency from sectarian obligation, but also left it without the financial support and sponsorship of the National Council of Jewish Women.
In the mid-1970s El Nido Services owned and operated three residential lodges for troubled teenage girls, and also started an outreach program of preventative counseling for at-risk youth in Los Angeles school districts. However, in 1980, El Nido Services lost the lease of its largest residential building, making operation of its smaller units economically impossible. Building on the outreach program in the Los Angeles school district, the board members of the Agency reorganized their operations in 1981 to provide a variety of counseling services from newly established outpost offices to fifteen Los Angeles communities under a new name: Children, Youth and Parent Counseling. The goals of the counseling program were threefold. They centered on preventive intervention: to avert future emotional problems of children of divorced parents; to support the completion of school and provide job placement skills for teen-agers who became parents; and to provide alternative activities for young adults at high risk for becoming involved in criminal activities.
These agency records, which cover the most mundane practical details of El Nido's operations, documenting its real estate management, zoning battles, tax questions, insurance and "disaster preparedness" provisions, and occasional personnel problems, reflect also the difficulties confronting an agency in the late 1970s that found itself providing outmoded services to a radically changed client population. As El Nido negotiated to free itself from close association with the Section, it also re-evaluated its program and its ability to manage, as an open institution, the increasingly violent and seriously delinquent girls referred to it by county probation departments. The loss if its largest facility in 1980 provided an opportunity for El Nido to reassess its organization. By then welfare policy makers, and some legislators, had begun to promote family preservation in virtually all circumstances, and to disfavor social services provided to adolescents separated from their families in residential facilities. That the El Nido board of directors was deeply engaged in the debate is evident from legislative material collected here, and from its correspondence, particularly with the California Association of Children's Residential Centers which was leading an advocacy campaign in the legislature for maintenance of residential services.
In 1981, after the inevitable closure of the residential facilities which had been the setting for El Nido's operation for decades, the agency turned to the business of fund raising, promotion, and development of outpost offices where it would provide a variety of social services in fifteen Los Angeles communities under a new name--Children, Youth & Parent Counseling.

Conditions Governing Use

The use of archival materials for on-site research does not constitute permission from the California Social Welfare Archives to publish them. Copyright has not been assigned to the California Social Welfare Archives, and the researcher is instructed to obtain permission to quote from or publish manuscripts in the CSWA's collections from the copyright holder.

Conditions Governing Access

Advance notice required for access.

Preferred Citation

[Box/folder# or item name], El Nido Services and Lodges records, Collection no. 0409, California Social Welfare Archives, Special Collections, USC Libraries, University of Southern California


There are ten series within the collection, and no sub-series. The largest series consist of minutes from annual meetings and committee work of the Agencies board of directors. The creators grouped these records according to subject, and within each folder they are, for the most part, arranged chronologically. For maximum accessibility, this finding aid lists the series alphabetically by name. However, since the original order for these records was maintained, the series appear in the boxes in the following order: By-laws; Tax Status; Property Management; Budget; Board of Directors; Public Relations; Correspondence; Programs; Fundraising; and Publications.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

California Association of Children's Residential Centers, Inc.. -- Correspondence
El Nido Services (Los Angeles, Calif.). -- Archives
National Council of Jewish Women. Los Angeles Section. -- Archives
Child welfare--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources
Family services--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources
Financial records
Legal documents
Los Angeles (Calif.)--Social conditions--Archival resources
Press releases
Social service--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources
Social work administration--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources
Social work with immigrants--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources
Social work with teenagers--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources
Youth--Services for--California--Los Angeles--Archival resources


By-laws 1954-1979

Scope and Content

This series contains the Agency's by-laws from the 1950s through the 1970s. There are numerous drafts of by-law amendments with hand-written notes on the margins of the drafts or on memos attached to the drafts. It seems this folder was created in preparation for the 1978 split between the National Council of Jewish Women and the Agency soon to be renamed El Nido Services, since it also contains legal documents pertaining to the official name change from the "Council of Jewish Women" to "El Nido Services." (See also Series 5 for more Name Changes Documents.)
Box 1, Folder 1

Bylaws documents 1954-1978

Box 1, Folder 2-3

Bylaws drafts 1976-1977

Box 1, Folder 4

Name change documents 1978-1979


Tax Status 1932-1979

Scope and Content

This series contains correspondence from the Internal Revenue Service and California State officials granting the Agency, under its various names, tax exemption. There is also correspondence between the Agency and other local and federal government agencies regarding clarification of bank laws, property tax, and information for the tax return filings of various board members. Also in this series is a 1973 letter from a board member urging Governor Reagan to pass the Tax Exempt Bill.
Box 1, Folder 5

El Nido Lodge tax exemption 1942-1971

Box 1, Folder 6

IRS classification status 509(a) 1933-1971

Box 1, Folder 7

IRS admission tax dues 1932-1933

Box 1, Folder 8

IRS exemption from bank and corporate franchise tax 1936-1954

Box 1, Folder 9

Board members' tax returns 1966-1974

Box 1, Folder 10

Property tax exemption 1955, 1979

Box 1, Folder 11

Exemption for unemployment insurance 1938-1960

Box 1, Folder 12

CA state exemption requests 1943-1973

Box 1, Folder 13

FICA Social Security tax 1951-1956

Box 1, Folder 14

Exemption from sales tax 1941, 1954

Box 1, Folder 15

Regulations information on tax exempt organizations 1945, 1953


Property Management 1964-1981

Scope and Content

The Property Management series contains property titles; blueprints of the various properties; leases; correspondence and memos regarding building safety, building payments, and building insurance. There are also statistical reports on the number of girls served at each lodge. Other information indirectly relating to the properties held by the Agency such as freeway zoning in the area and maps are included, too.
Box 1, Folder 16

El Nido Lodges fire prevention systems 1974-1977

Box 1, Folder 17

El Nido Lodges disaster plans 1974

Box 1, Folder 18

Hayworth and Beverly properties documents 1967-1974

Box 1, Folder 19

El Nido Martel location 1964-1973

Box 1, Folder 20

Opposition to zoning 1968-1979

Box 1, Folder 21

Title search insurance of grant deed 1978

Box 1, Folder 22

CA state agency for surplus property 1977

Box 1, Folder 23

El Nido lease, Beverly and Hayworth 1981


Budget 1949-1983

Scope and Content

This series contains reports for staffing, program revenue, estimated spending projects, tables showing expenditures, financial statements, and statistical charts on the number of girls served at each lodge.
Box 1, Folder 24

Services to foreign born 1949-1953

Box 1, Folder 25

5-year trends in agency 1971-1977

Box 1, Folder 26-27

Agency staffing patterns 1972-1976

Box 1, Folder 28

Financial statements 1982-1983

Box 1, Folder 29

Administration notes 1975-1977


Board of Directors 1964-1985

Scope and Content

This series makes up the bulk of the collection. There are separate folders for the various Board Committees, and most folders are roughly in chronological order. Most folders contain minutes of either Committee or annual Board meetings. Announcements and invitations of the Agency’s meetings and special guests are included, as well as slides from a 1980 meeting and a guest signature book for meetings held between 1981-1984.
Box 2, Folder 1

Meeting announcements 1966-1983

Box 2, Folder 2

Annual meetings 1979

Box 2, Folder 3

Executive Committee 1979-1982

Box 2, Folder 4

Guest book 1981

Box 2, Folder 5

Board meeting notices 1983-1985

Box 2, Folder 6

Joint committee meetings 1964, 1982

Box 2, Folder 7-8

Staff committee 1979-1980

Box 2, Folder 9

Personnel committee 1978-1979

Box 2, Folder 10

Board of Director parties 1985

Box 2, Folder 11

Annual meeting 1980

Box 2, Folder 12

Membership committee 1984

Box 2, Folder 13

Committee assignments 1978-1979

Box 2, Folder 14

Board of Directors lists 1976-1981

Box 2, Folder 15

Annual meeting 1984

Box 2, Folder 16

Board meeting minutes 1980-1982

Box 2, Folder 17

Membership committee 1983-1984

Box 2, Folder 18

Community involvement committee 1973-1979

Box 2, Folder 19

Agency section agreements 1977-1980

Box 2, Folder 20

Various drafts and final forms 1978-1979


Public Relations 1980-1986

Scope and Content

This series contains news articles about El Nido, press releases from the Agency, and brochures. It also contains Publicity Committee memos and scripts of television spots and contact information for broadcasters.
Box 1, Folder 30

El Nido News 1981-1983

Box 2, Folder 21

El Nido press publicity 1980-1981

Box 2, Folder 22

Agency public relations plans and projects 1981-1982

Box 2, Folder 23

Press releases 1980-1981

Box 2, Folder 24

Other agency newsletters 1981-1985

Box 2, Folder 25

El Nido News 1982-1986

Box 2, Folder 26

El Nido draft press releases 1981-1985

Box 2, Folder 27

Broadcasting information 1983-1986


Correspondence 1973-1986

Scope and Content

This series contains general correspondence and correspondence with other members of the California Association of Residence Centers.
Box 2, Folder 28

Correspondence 1984

Box 2, Folder 29

Correspondence 1985-1986

Box 2, Folder 30

Correspondence 1973-1980


Programs 1969-1980

Scope and Content

This series contains statistics of children served at the El Nido lodges, childcare agreements with Los Angeles County, and a guide for counseling techniques utilized by the Los Angeles County elementary schools. Interestingly, there is a Masters thesis included in a folder evaluating the effectiveness of residence center program of El Nido lodge, that indicate several weaknesses of El Nido Services.
Box 2, Folder 31

Dues 1975-1978

Box 2, Folder 32

Information on other CRC centers 1979-1980

Box 2, Folder 33

El Nido exploratory study [Master's thesis] 1969

Box 2, Folder 34

"Evaluating an Agency-School Group Counseling Program" 1974

Box 2, Folder 35

Evaluation--El Nido 1974-1976

Box 2, Folder 36

El Nido program review 1975-1978

Box 2, Folder 37

Los Angeles County 1975-1979

Box 2, Folder 38

Reports on evaluation of El Nido 1970-1980

Box 2, Folder 39

"A Guide to Group Counseling in Elementary Schools" 1969


Fundraising 1981-1984

Scope and Content

This series contains copies of fundraising membership appeals and memos requesting donations. There is also information on an El Nido program to consolidate health services for "at-risk youth" and a grant rejection letter.
Box 2, Folder 40

Information cards 1984

Box 2, Folder 41

Drew Medical School grant 1981

Box 2, Folder 42

Gardena Employee Assistance program 1983


Publications 1970s

Scope and Content

This series contains brochures that the Agency produced for families going through divorce and gives the families advice on how to deal with potential conflicts with their former spouses. Presented from the perspective of helping the child adjust in these situations, the brochures provide very practical information.
Box 2, Folder 43

Conciliation court brochures 1970s

Box 2, Folder 44

[Article on role of grandparents during divorce] 1979