Family Assessment Counseling & Education Services

F.A.C.E.S. mission is to provide assessment, mental health services, education services, and support to families in crisis from separation and divorce, domestic violence and substance abuse to prevent family violence. 

Our vision is to reach all families with counseling services and education  for prevention and intervention of family disruption and violence. To help families solve problems and receive the emotional attention and support they need to rebuild their lives.

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The idea of FACES was conceived in 1988. Working first in the Superior Court with divorcing families, the visionaries saw first hand a need for more services than a two hour mediation visit regarding custody arrangements. The families they worked with were angry, lonely, worried about their children. They often had little community resources to send families to after mediation. They observed how children were shuffled back and forth, experiencing parents with problems. The children endured the tension when they saw their parents together, for fear an outburst would occur. The women knew that these traumatic experiences may endure throughout the children's lifetime. 


 These founders envisioned a place where children and their parents would have easy access to affordable counseling. They named the agency for what they did: Family Assessment, Counseling & Education Services. They wanted single parents to learn how to strengthen their reconfigured families. The founders got to work. 

Former OC Court Mediator, Mary O'Connor, MFT, a single parent of five, along with co-founders therapist Shelley Driscoll and office manager Cheryl Ramirez, pooled their resources and invited other community members to get involved. They met with supporters like John Smith III and John Balent, family law attorneys, Commissioner Richard Vogl and his daughter who helped with the creative end of our management. 

Richard Ronsko who made a sign, Erin Petrossi who brought her baby in her carrier to pick up typing, and other therapists who helped create parenting classes, anger management groups. This non profit is the results of thousands of hours of donated time and energy from hundreds of dedicated people who saw the good we were accomplishing. This original undertaking  began an amazing journey that has led to thousands of families that have received help and healing for over three decades.

Family Law Courts and Social Services agencies respect FACES work and use the agency as a resource to help families. Donations to FACES from the community from couches and toy drives to recycled desks  has encouraged hundreds of volunteers to contribute time and donations to the agency. We are most grateful to those foundations who have supported our cause, as well as our beloved volunteer Grant Writer Bill Skahill and our Clinical Supervisor Bernie Schwartz who will retire this year after decades of giving their time to the agency. 


Fill out the contact form below to get in touch with FACES. Learn more about our work and how you can get involved.

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