847-866-8049 info@piventheatre.org



The Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Child + Family Center (Rice Center) provides a temporary home for many of Illinois’ young children in care with severe mental health and behavior needs. The residential care and treatment center helps children move forward and work towards a goal of transition to a less restrictive environment within 18 months and ultimately, return to a stable home.

The center serves children ages six to 15 with emotional and behavioral problems that prevent them from living in a family setting. None of the children served are new to the mental health system. Most have prior psychiatric hospitalizations and nearly 100% have been through a prior treatment program. When children arrive at the center, most come from families that don’t yet have the skills required to meet the needs of these children in a family setting.

The Rice Center facility is in a residential neighborhood within the Evanston community. Children’s Home + Aid has provided residential services to children at this location for over 100 years. In 1991, a new facility was constructed that includes housing for up to 50 children, a gymnasium, an art studio and other modern amenities, including one of only two centers in Illinois that has a public school operating within its campus.

Our treatment philosophy is an integrated approach rooted in systems theory, Collaborative Problem Solving and the latest neurobiological research. Interventions are designed to be collaborative in nature, include the child, child’s family, school and legal systems and prioritize a relational approach, within which adaptive emotional, social and life skills can develop and flourish. The Rice Center emphasizes inclusion of family members, teachers and caseworkers in treatment planning and implementation in order to facilitate utilization of resources that help children and their families to achieve maximum success in treatment. We believe that our client’s want to be successful and need targeted intervention and individualized treatment to gain the skills to be successful.

Programming at the Rice Center take a holistic treatment approach designed to treat and transition youth into a family setting within 12 to 18 months. Clinicians develop individual treatment and transition plans for each child. Residents of the Rice Center receive a range of therapeutic and rehabilitative stabilization services designed to address their emotional needs while providing a supportive environment that encourages personal growth. The Rice Program is based on campus wide and unit specific age and developmentally appropriate expectations and rules. These expectations and rules govern safety and predictability. Staff implement and reinforce expectations and within a context of a collaborative and non-coercive relationship between staff and client.

“I like the objects, you know where you made the things that weren’t there from the first one [first round of group with Piven].”

Age 13

“Being a part of the Piven group at Rice was exciting and enjoyable. It was an appropriate amount of challenge for the kids as they were able to practice social skills while also building ego strength through a fun experience. The kids looked forward to the group and were invested in participating.”


Art Therapist

“It’s fun! We played a lot of games and pretended to do things.”

Age 11