About us

MercyFirst, a 501 (c) 3 organization, is one of New York’s leading not-for-profit human service agencies. With an annual budget of $48 million and a staff of over 500 employees, we serve more than 3,200 children and their families, without regard to race, religion, sexual orientation or physical condition, at locations in Brooklyn, Queens and throughout Long Island. MercyFirst’s programs are licensed by the New York State Office of Children and Families and the New York State Office of Mental Health and accredited by the national Council on Accreditation. Our agency has been certified by the Sanctuary Institute for successfully implementing a trauma-informed approach to the services we offer in all programs throughout the agency.

Founded as sister orphanages in 1894 by the Sisters of Mercy, St. Mary’s of the Angels Home in Syosset and Angel Guardian Home in Brooklyn, MercyFirst today offers an integrated continuum of care for children in need, from birth through adolescence, including children who have been abused and neglected; youth with serious emotional problems; teenagers and young adults who are without family; and families coping with the stress and pressures of poverty, domestic violence, mental illness, and substance abuse.

Last year at MercyFirst

894 Families were helped through our Preventive Services Programs.
766 foster children were provided safe and loving homes in our Foster Care Program.
41 new families were created through the adoption of a foster child.
30 Youth received scholarship assistance through the MercyFirst Scholarship Program.
24 teen moms in our Mother-Child Program learned to be better parents to their children through our Parenting Skills Training Program.
262 youth were cared for in our specialized Residential Programs.

Highlights



Project C.A.R.E.

Project C.A.R.E. provides youth the opportunity to interact with Therapy dogs through a curriculum of training methods, basic animal care and grooming techniques. The youth also gain valuable experience by volunteering at animal shelters and giving back to the community.
 

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The Arts

The Arts programs at MercyFirst provide youth with the opportunity to engage in creative expression as a way to increase emotional regulation; develop awareness of others; build self-confidence and problem solve. Campus murals, individual or group art sessions, yoga, and parent child experiences are part of this newly developing program.
 

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Scholarship Program

The Scholarship Fund Program provides motivated MercyFirst high school graduates with stipends to help them attend college or vocational training programs that will enable them to secure jobs and become self-supporting members of the community.