In 2023, Friends of the Children will begin serving youth and families in Houston! Our vision is that one day, every child in Houston who is at highest risk of the long-term effects of childhood adversity, like foster care, will have a Friend – a long term, salaried professional mentor who stays with them from pre-school through high school graduation, 12+ years, no matter what.

WHY HOUSTON?

Children and families in Houston have unique talents, varied interests and big dreams. Some, however, face more obstacles than others. Across Harris County, over 30% of children live in low-income households and more than 7,400 are victims of abuse or neglect. In 2021, over 5,900 Houston-area children experienced foster care and these youth often encounter additional challenges in school and in life. In Harris County alone, two out of every five children struggle with mental health and substance use disorders.

Brandon T. Denton - Executive Director

MEET BRANDON T. DENTON - EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Brandon T. Denton is excited to be joining the Friends of the Children team as the Executive Director – Houston, Texas. Brandon’s purpose in life, as well as his career experiences in youth development, community relations, and leadership, directly aligns with the mission and vision of Friends!

Brandon comes to Friends of the Children from the City of Houston where he spent seven years as a public administrator in various roles, in multiple departments. Most recently, Brandon served as the Director of My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) Houston, a backbone initiative founded by President Barack Obama to address persistent opportunity gaps facing boys and young men of color.

Brandon Denton is a certified leadership coach, trainer, and speaker with the John Maxwell Team. He received his Master of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix; Bachelor of Science in Sport Management from Rogers State University; Associate of Arts in Psychology/Sociology from Northern Oklahoma College; and Certificate in Innovative Leadership in Public Administration from Georgetown University.

An implant to Houston, and native of Spencer, Oklahoma, Mr. Denton shares with Friends of the Children, his humble beginnings, passion for service, and varied experiences as a professional, to improve the lives of youth and young adults by providing them with access to opportunity, encouragement, and possibilities for positive life outcomes.

PROFESSIONAL MENTORING THAT SUPPORTS YOUTH

For nearly 30 years, the Friends of the Children professional mentoring model has been proven to get results for youth who have experienced complex trauma, like foster care:

3 Es

92% of youth go on to enroll in post-secondary education, serve our country or enter the workforce​.

Graduation

83% of youth with a Friend graduate high school, while only 55% without a Friend graduate high school.

Juvenile Justice

93% of youth with a Friend avoid the juvenile justice system, compared to 74% avoiding juvenile justice without a Friend.

Parenting

98% of youth with a Friend avoid early parenting, while only 74% without a Friend avoid early parenting.

HELP MAKE CHANGE IN HOUSTON

Challenges faced by a community require local solutions. Friends–Houston is its own independent 501c3 with local leadership from board to staff to walk alongside the children and families in Houston who need it most.

Interested in learning more about how you can support Friends–Houston?
Please contact Executive Director Brandon Denton at info@friendsofthechildren.org

Thank you!