Community of Hope
Our Mission & Vision
The Guidance Center provides comprehensive mental health treatment to our community’s most disadvantaged children and their families struggling with mental illness and abuse, leading them toward a positive and productive future. The Guidance Center envisions a community where all children have the help they need to be healthy and happy.
In Long Beach during the 1940s, help for mental health challenges was difficult to find. In 1946, a visionary group of local public school teachers and counselors responded by forming the agency to provide help and hope to these children and their families.
The Guidance Center honors our community and each other by being a center of clinical excellence and an employer of choice. To these ends, our core values are:
Balance: Provide clients and staff with the tools to support a healthy life in the areas of personal well-being, family, and work.
Opportunity: Promote personal and professional growth as clients and staff aim for success in becoming the best versions of themselves. Embrace and respond to change while maintaining the core values of our mission and vision.
Integrity: Exemplify our core values with transparency in our communication, honesty and respect in our relationships, and conduct ourselves in an ethical and professional manner.
Stability: Provide resources to help build a solid foundation toward emotional and financial sustainability for our clients, staff and agency as a whole.
Creativity: Utilize program development and trainings to support staff in implementing innovative programs to engage children and families.
Humility: Value each client as a partner in their treatment by seeing them as a whole person and supporting them without judgement. Value each staff member as a partner in creating a supportive, authentic and safe organization.
Inclusivity: Recognize the unique qualities and traits of each client and staff member and embrace their differences with compassion and respect.
Our Statement on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
The Guidance Center’s commitment to equity began out of the concern for children in the community who experience significant challenges that impair their functioning. Out of this concern advanced a desire to aid in the ability for ALL children and their families to have the help they need to be healthy and happy.
As The Guidance Center has grown and expanded so has our awareness and understanding of the factors that contribute to the challenges of the families we serve. We have made a commitment to the most disadvantaged children and families, and we recognize we serve primarily Black and Brown communities. Particularly, African American and Latinx children and families experience significant barriers to accessing and engaging in supportive mental health services. These barriers are directly and indirectly linked to racial inequities.
During recent social unrest that erupted in the wake of the murders of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd we also recognized that we needed to do more to interrupt the patterns of racial inequities that are detrimentally impacting those that are already marginalized. As individuals and collectively, we stand against racism and bigotry, striving to create an environment where all people are seen, heard and valued regardless of race and individual differences. We aim to live up to the agency’s core value of inclusivity, defined as recognizing the unique qualities of each client and staff member and embracing differences with compassion and respect.
We have established two task forces focused on racial equity, diversity, and inclusion. Through the efforts of each of these task forces, initially focused on the African American community then expanding to all disenfranchised populations, we strive to create change on the micro and macro level as we continue to provide comprehensive mental health services.
Together and with respect, we will create change.
75 Years of Help and Hope
We are funded by the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health and by generous supporters like you.
Our Community Collaborators
At The Guidance Center, we believe partnerships are key to addressing the urgent mental health needs of our communities. We collaborate with sister organizations, civic leaders, and community members so we can be joined in our efforts and our mission to help the families who need us most.