What is the Center for Family Resources?

Center for Family Resources, Inc. (CFR) is a private, non-profit community organization that is dedicated to promoting the general well-being of all children and their families. We strive to build partnerships with families and the community in order to provide high-quality comprehensive child development and family strengthening services.

Currently, we offer a Head Start program serving income-eligible children ages 3 to 5 years and an Early Head Start program serving income-eligible children ages 2 months to 3 years and pregnant women from the towns of Ringwood, West Milford, Woodland Park, Wanaque, Bloomingdale, Pompton Lakes, Wayne, Haledon, Prospect Park, Clifton, Totowa, North Haledon, Hawthorne, and Little Falls within Passaic County, NJ.


Community Services - 37 years
Management Team Experience - 68 years
Education Team Experience - 146 years
Social Service Team Experience - 93 years

Mission Statement

Center for Family Resources is dedicated to:

  • Developing collaborations between parents and professionals to promote the general well-being of young children and their families.
  • Meeting the child development needs of young children, families, and communities through early care and education.
  • Obtaining community support for income-eligible children, including culturally diverse children and children with special needs.

Vision Statement

  • Providing Early Care and Education
  • Supporting Families
  • Building Partnerships
  • Promoting Healthy Communities

Program Governance

There is a Program Governance structure in place at the Center for Family Resources to support the delivery of quality services to children and families, and to support the meaningful role of parents in shared decision-making. Parents are able to participate in developing and implementing local program policies, activities, and services. The structure consists of Parent Committees, the Policy Council, and the Board of Directors.

Parent Committee

Any parent and or guardian, whose child is currently enrolled in Head Start is a member of the Parent Committee, at the site where his/her child attends. Each Parent Committee meets once per month either at the site your child attends or at a location convenient to participants. Refreshments are served at these meetings.

During the Parent Committee meetings, parents can arrange for trainings specific to their own needs and interests and help teachers choose field trips. Each Parent Committee elects representatives and alternates. This is an opportunity for parents to connect with other parents at their site.

Check out the events calendar for the next parent committee meeting for your site.

Policy Council

The Policy Council is composed of elected parent representatives from each of the Center for Family Resources sites as well as Community Representatives. Each Parent Committee elects representatives and alternates in October of each year. It is necessary to have at least 51% of the members of the Policy Council be parents or guardians of currently enrolled children.

The Policy Council Representatives elect their own officers:

  • Chairperson
  • Vice Chairperson
  • Secretary
  • Treasurer

Policy Council representatives attend monthly meetings at the Ringwood site on Thursday mornings. The Policy Council’s main responsibility is to participate in developing policies and procedures for the operation of all phases of the Head Start program.

The Parent Involvement Specialist provides the Policy Council parents with technical support. Participating parents will receive reimbursement any incurred expenses, such as child care. Mileage will be reimbursed when using your own vehicle.

Board of Directors

The Center for Family Resources’ Board of Directors consists of parent representatives, community representatives, and the Executive Director. To become a member of the Board of Directors, you must be elected by the Parent Committee. Elections are held in September each year. The Board of Directors’ main responsibility is to set goals and oversee legal and fiscal operations of the program. The Board of Directors meets once a month at the Ringwood site on Friday afternoons. Participating parents will receive reimbursement any incurred expenses, such as child care. Mileage will be reimbursed when using your own vehicle.

A WORD FROM Executive Director

CFR Families, Staff and Friends:
Program year 2020-2021 was again a very different and challenging year for all of us here at CFR. We opened in September, 2020 with the hopes of keeping classrooms in session all year. This proved to be difficult with occasional shutdowns of rooms due to COVID -19 and Clifton Pre-k providing virtual programming for many months to ensure the safety of the children. Our staff and families learned how to participate in virtual learning experience. As challenging as it was, we all worked together to be successful and new skills were learned by all.
The Henry and Marilyn Taub Foundation once again supported the agency with funding to facilitate staff wellness as well as education on trauma informed care. The Administration recognized that the effects of the pandemic on our staff, children and families will be on going and CFR is determined to offer support so that success is possible.
Our partnership with the Clifton School district continues to be beneficial for the children and families. As stated, there were months of virtual learning but the district helped staff in providing services that supported the children. Dr. Torley retired and will be missed but we were lucky to include, Marissa Papamarkos, the new Principal of this collaboration on the CFR Board of Directors.
The Highland’s Family Success Center continued to offer services to the community, but they were virtual until the last part of the program year. In addition, the agency received funding from Passaic County Human Services for Collective Impact. The Highlands staff managed this grant which offered ESL classes, help with referrals, security deposits for families that were struggling, mental health services, and emergency assistance to name a few aspects of the grant.
Moving forward CFR hopes for more stable and regular programming and good health to all of our families, staff and friends.

Elaine V. Ruhl

Executive Director – Center for Family Resources
Elaine Ruhl
Students Served Annually


Comprehensive Services

We support children’s growth and development in a positive learning environment through a variety of services.

Serving the Community since 1980

We have reached over 15,000 families through the years!

Knowledgeable Staff

We pride ourselves on continued professional development for all staff.

Community Involvement

We partner with over 30 community organizations to provide the best for our families.

It's FREE!

Head Start and Early Head Start programming is free for income eligible families.

Community Impact

Community Resources