Emergency Sanctuary

Emergency Sanctuary 2017-02-15T11:51:09+00:00

Safety and comfort in the midst of crisis.

When kids are suddenly removed from their homes by law enforcement or Child Protective Services, there is often no place for them to go. They may wait in police stations, or alone in waiting rooms, as social workers search for a safe home for them during this crisis.

The kids are scared. They don’t know what is happening or why. Their parents are having the worst day of their lives.

With nearly 10,000 kids in foster care every day in Washington State, there simply are not enough homes available. When a state social worker can’t find the right foster family right away, kids who are already traumatized face uncertain futures. Brothers and sisters may be separated, or a child may end up moving to several different homes within just a few days or weeks.

The Amara Emergency Sanctuary Program provides an alternative for these children.

I am at a nice place with nice people. I am safe.

– A child at Grandese’s Place, on the phone with a relative

The Amara Emergency Sanctuary Program

Our Emergency Sanctuary Program provides a temporary home to kids who were recently removed from their own home, for their own safety. It is a safe place for kids to land that gives families and state social workers more time to find the best long-term option for the child.

With the ability to care for several kids at a time, we can help keep brothers and sisters together during this traumatic transition. Sanctuary staff and volunteers provide trauma-informed care and comfort 24/7, focusing exclusively on caring for the child.

Our King County sanctuary, Grandese’s Place, is located in Seattle, and our Pierce County Sanctuary is located in Tacoma.

At Grandese’s Place, big people take care of little people. We want all kids to know: you are safe, you are welcome, and you are important.

In the midst of crisis, our Sanctuary Program gives kids a chance to be kids—playing, doing art, exploring the city, and being tucked into a warm bed at night by a safe, loving adult.

Grandese’s Place is named in honor of Louise Jones McKinney, an extraordinary philanthropist and child advocate. Learn more about her legacy here.

You can help.


Volunteer — The Amara Emergency Sanctuary requires volunteer support in order to provide kids the exemplary care they deserve. A few hours of your time could make a profound difference in the life of a child. Please visit our Volunteer page here to learn more about volunteering with Amara.

Donate – We are seeking donations of:

  • New Backpacks and duffel bags – all colors and sizes, especially gender neutral styles
  • Craft supplies, like washable paint, markers, paint brushes, and paper
  • New (in the package) socks and underwear, toddler through young teen

We also welcome donations through our Amazon Wish List.

Please direct questions about in-kind donations intended for the Amara Emergency Sanctuary to Jen Kamel at [email protected] or 206.289.0047 ext. 1749.