Edwin Gould Services For Children & Families became a subsidiary of Rising Ground in 2018. This strategic partnership expanded Rising Ground’s work and reach in foster care, family stabilization (preventive services), and residences and other programs for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, while also adding a rich cadre of gender-based violence supports and prevention to Rising Ground’s work. Today, Rising Ground and Edwin Gould operate under one uniform set of policies and practices, guided by the same mission, values, expectations, and vision, as we continue to expand services to more New Yorkers facing adversity.
The decision to bring Rising Ground and Edwin Gould together builds upon a strong historical connection between the organizations.
Born into wealth and privilege in 1870’s New York, Edwin Gould recognized early on the power his position in society afforded him to assist his neighbors in need. Edwin was fond of his mother-in-law, Hester Shrady. Inspired by her work with the Messiah Home for children, Edwin and his wife Sarah began making contributions of money, food and clothing to charitable organizations. Rising Ground was one of the children’s homes to benefit from their involvement. Edwin visited the home regularly and was known to the children and staff as a friend and benefactor who provided gifts such as tickets to the circus and ice cream during the hot summer months.
In 1923, through a special act of the New York Legislature, Edwin Gould established the Edwin Gould Foundation for Children (later renamed Edwin Gould Services for Children & Families) to ensure that these services to children would not cease with his death. In 1939, six years after Edwin Gould’s death, the Edwin Gould New York Fund was established as a separate corporation to operate the childcare programs of the Edwin Gould Foundation for Children.
Of particular relevance to the longstanding connection between Edwin Gould and Rising Ground, Edwin Gould’s nieces and nephews were adopted through Rising Ground (then named Leake & Watts) in the early 20th century. He provided significant personal financial support to Rising Ground, which led to the construction of buildings on our Yonkers campus, as well as an enduring endowment fund.
As Rising Ground and Edwin Gould move forward together, we believe that through this affiliation we are advancing our work and creating a stronger, more sustainable long-term structure that gives us the depth, expertise, and adaptability that will benefit the people and communities we support.