Millhill Child & Family Development was established in 1971 and has since been committed to serving Trenton’s children, youth, and families in an effort to improve their quality of life through programs that educate, empower, and transform. This year, we celebrate 50 years of our innovative and collaborative programming! Read some reflections from staff, students, supporters, leaders and friends about what Millhill has meant to them, and please share your own! Stay tuned, since we’ll be publishing more stories from the community each month and sharing on social media.
Jayden Hamlet, Trenton PEERS Participant
I think my favorite thing about Millhill is the friendships I make with other young adults around my age and with the adults as well. Especially being in the PEERS program, there are people I meet that I will forever remember because of the shared experiences I have had with them. Knowing that there is a place where I can truly call these people I meet my second family really uplifts me.
Michelle Martino, Senior Vice President, NJ Community Relations Manager - Bank of America
Millhill Child and Family Development has done a tremendous job providing behavioral health services and resources to members of our community who are struggling. Millhill provides support to the entire family and is truly a great partner in the community. We are deeply grateful for our partnership over the last few years and congratulate the team at Millhill, a 2020 Bank of America Neighborhood Builders awardee, for reaching this impressive and well-deserved milestone!
Joyce Trotman Jordan, Millhill Board Member
Millhill is that safe haven all children and families could benefit from as they grow and strive in our urban community... Millhill a beacon of light providing the guidance needed for social, emotional and educational growth. Teaching our youth and families how to courageously advocate for themselves and their neighborhoods.
Bernie Flynn, CEO, Mercer Street Friends
Millhill has been a critical support to children and families in the Trenton community for now one-half a century. They are laser focused on improving the emotional and educational well-being of our young people and their parents. Executive Director Cynthia Oberkofler is a tremendous leader who operates in an inclusive and collaborative manner with her many nonprofit partners so as to ensure maximum collective impact and Millhills' wonderful staff follow her example. Thank you Millhill and congratulations on sustaining 50 years of dedicated service!
Narcisa Delgado, Millhill Employee
MillHill is an organization that offers many benefits to support the development of children and families. Being part of Millhill has represented an extraordinary opportunity for me. The fact that I'm involved in the children's future academic success makes me happy. Seeing the smiles on every child under my care is priceless.
Lesly Yax, Trenton PEERS Participant
My favorite thing about Millhill is that the staff shows enthusiasm to support young generations. Millhill makes me feel assured and embraced. I got the opportunity to be in the PEERS Program throughout high school, and I have gathered the courage to be open-minded, outgoing, which helped me improve academically, and socially. Thanks to Millhill, I had the opportunity to meet great and indispensable individuals like Micayla Weissburg, Michelle Thompkins, Kevin Simme, and Janet Berrill.
Peg Forrestel, Director, Contributions & Community Affairs at Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
We have been long-term supporters of Millhill because your programs enrich the lives of vulnerable children and their families, realizing positive outcomes both in the near- and long-term. You convene and galvanize community partners to work together to address systemic challenges that no one organization can tackle alone. Essentially, what you do is helping to transform our community. Happy 50th Anniversary Millhill, keep up the good work!
Allen Silk, Millhill Board Member
My first legal matter for a nonprofit, at the beginning of my career in 1976 at Stark & Stark, was Millhill’s incorporation and bylaws. I also became the first chair of the newly created board. I invited Eleanor Horne, Howard Hopenwasser, Tom Suarez and through Tom, Joe Saphire to join me. Now more than 44 years later, I still serve on Millhill's Foundation Board because when a small child pulls on your trouser leg and then looks up at you, you cannot help but feel that tug in your heart - it’s an unbreakable bond. All I want for the people that nonprofits help is for them to have a level playing field.
The Connolly Family, Out of Home Placement Support Participants
Our son Robert has been participating in the OHPS program for over two years now. The program has helped Robert immensely! Robert started out in the OHPS program as our foster son. The OHPS program has helped Robert with social skills, discipline, and confidence. Plus, the activities are so fun! Tamara from OHPS is such a caring person and calls to check in on us periodically to see if we need anything. We officially adopted Robert in December of 2020, and will miss the OHPS program as Robert phases out of it. Thanks for all you have done for Robert and our family!
Cynthia Smith-Ray, Millhill Employee
It’s not every day Millhill turns 50 especially during a pandemic. Although we are under a “new norm”, Millhill’s commitment to providing services to children and families continues. But keep in mind, Millhill did not turn fifty alone. The staff of Millhill are talented and mission driven and they are making a difference in the lives of children and families. This was true in 1971 and still holds true for 2021. Happy 50th Year Anniversary Millhill Child and Family Development.
Ranai Morgan, Trenton PEERS Participant
Millhill to me is a place that I can always come back to, in appreciation for what they have done not only for me but for my fellow Trentonians as well. Millhill has opened my eyes in different ways of how I can help my community. I am strongly passionate about the well-being of others; Millhill has made it possible for me to be a part of a group that is keen on impacting my community in a great way.
Cathy Schaeder-Batterman, Co-Chair, PACF Fund for Women & Girls
My husband Eric and I support Millhill because of their exceptional work, especially the Trenton PEERS program. These engaged and committed high schoolers are touching the lives of so many young people in Trenton. The leadership and life skills the PEERS students learn are superb preparation for their post high school education and careers. Congratulations and thank you to everyone at Millhill for 50 years of strengthening our community and improving the lives of so many. And, kudos to Michele Thompkins, Micayla Weissburg and the entire PEERS team!
Calvin Thomas, LodeStar Consulting, Coordinator of Trenton Area Stakeholders
As a Trenton resident, I am deeply grateful for the services that Millhill provides for our children and families…In my 40 years of work with the nonprofit sector, Millhill stands out as one of the top organizations that provides a comprehensive array of services for the underserved children and families in Trenton. Congratulations on 50 years of quality service. I truly hope that Millhill Child & Family Development Center is around for another 50 years.
Eleanor Horne, Previous Millhill Board Member
Millhill has always made resources available for kids and families who need support in dealing with the many demands of life…I believe in the mission. I believe that there is nothing more important than giving children a strong foundation. Millhill does that. I also believe that communities need strong nonprofits to bridge the gaps in what individuals can do for themselves, what the community can and should do, and what the government should contribute. The agency is well managed and has been able to adapt to meet challenges, including the pandemic. I am proud of the time I spent on the Millhill Board of Trustees in its early years.
Andrew Frank, Millhill Board Member
Several years ago, I accompanied my wife to a meeting of the PEERS, where she was prepared to tell them about her career in environmental advocacy. My wife took the students out to see her car, a Chevy Bolt, and opened up the hood. To their astonishment- No motor! It was exciting to watch their excitement and try and answer their great questions. The goal to expose them to new experiences and possible career options was accomplished that evening.
Roberta Kaplan, Millhill Board Member
As a Millhill Board Member, I am very happy to see the successes people who take part in our programs continue to have.
Micayla Weissburg, Millhill Employee
I am proud to be a part of the Millhill community. We are always innovating in order to provide community members with the best opportunities and services. I particularly enjoy working with teens through the Youth Engagement Department, who I always end up learning so much from.
Omar Morales, Next Generation Community Leader
My favorite thing about Millhill is the staff, with all the programs I've been a part of I can truly say that the staff has always gotten the best out of the members, whether that be getting us out of our comfort zones or making us feel welcome there has never been a dull moment!
Lila Melo Torres, Millhill Employee
Our favorite thing about Millhill was all our teachers and friends. We felt happy and safe when we were at school. We graduated to KINDERGARTEN!!
Sierra Winder, Trenton PEERS Participant
Millhill works to "empower children and families" and to "transform our community", as a Trenton native and a Black woman, I wish to do the same. I look forward to traveling all over and telling kids how amazing they are... I look forward to helping people find their own purpose in life. I look forward to being a part of the movement that attacks issues of institutional and systematic racism…All of my goals are built on the foundation and knowledge Millhill helped to provide me about what I want in life.
Nicole Cowan, Millhill Employee
Millhill's Behavioral Health Department is team-oriented, cohesive, and excellent at advocating for their clients/families. The passion and dedication the staff have for the local community is unmatched and feels like a family, for both clients and therapists alike.
Casey Fortson, Next Generation Community Leader
Honestly Millhill has been amazing for me, not only have they done a stellar job in making me feel included and appreciated in a multitude of activities and projects. Also they have helped me grow as a person - the resources and programs that Millhill possesses really have bolstered my personal and professional development. For example in the Summer Youth and Employment program this summer really helped me gain more of a focused professional outlook.
Millhill is dedicated to the health and well-being of those individuals who are most vulnerable in our society: children.
I first learned about Millhill in 2007 and have been supporting their liaison ever since. One of my proudest moments was the dedication of the Behavioral Health Center at 802 Prospect street, photo attached after the dedication ceremony. So proud of all the workers at Millhill and their dedication to Millhill’s constituents over these 50 years. Pray they keep going for many more!
Jeff Richardson, Corporate Giving Supervisor, NJM Insurance Group
Now in its 50th year, Millhill has withstood the test of time - - by responding to community needs with high-quality programs and services for children and families. I was first connected to Millhill as a Steering Committee member of the Trenton Area Stakeholders and later, through the Mayor’s Summer Youth Employment Program. As demonstrated by each of these initiatives, Millhill is a practitioner of partnerships, a true collaborator, and an organization that puts community at the forefront of its mission. Congratulations to Millhill on a remarkable 50 years and many more to come!