The Children’s Fresh Air Home (CFAH) is a non-profit organization that provides a no-cost, enriching summer experience at the Jersey Shore in a safe, positive environment for children who may be living with family or community adversities.
In 1896 The Children’s Fresh Air Home was founded by L. Ida Dukes, a 41-year old mother of six children. Initially, Mrs. Dukes began to invite children whose families were unable to afford a summer retreat from city life for a day of fun along the Delaware River. Over the next several years, Mrs. Dukes continued her outreach. In 1911, she brought her first group of children to Wildwood, N.J. and in 1923 the Children’s Fresh Air Home opened its doors.
Following the death of Ida Dukes, Miss Myra Loring became the Superintendent of the Children’s Fresh Air Home. Miss Loring served in this position from 1938 to 1988. She refused to accept a salary for her work during her 50-year tenure at the Home. She passed away in 1988.
In 2006 The Children’s Fresh Air Home board makes the difficult decision to temporarily close the Home for critical repairs and establishes a capital campaign, called the Century Campaign, to support the renovation effort.
In 2017, The Children’s Fresh Air Home (CFAH) will apply for a $300,000 grant for the project from a Small Cities Community Facilities Grant – with support from the city of North Wildwood. But the organization must raise matching funds of $300,000 in order to receive the grant. Combined, this $600,000 would finally enable CFAH to complete the Home’s renovation.
We’re calling on our friends, neighbors and local businesses to help make this decade-long dream a reality for the 20,000 children from the Philadelphia and New Jersey regions who have found a summer respite in CFAH for more than 115 years.