CLF MISSION STATEMENT:  The Children’s Lifesaving Foundation (the CLF) is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization, dedicated to transforming the lives of  at-risk youth and homeless families living in homeless shelters and transitional housing in Los Angeles through a unique approach of year-round holiday, summer camp, academic and outdoor education programs.

OVERVIEW: Since 1993, the CLF has served over 75,000 at-risk and homeless youth and families-through its three program platforms- Living, Learning and Enriching.

LIVING, LEARNING & ENRICHING. Each platform contains a key program or programs within it to help make the lives of those we serve thrive:

The Living Platform is an authentic, one-on-one intuitive path to domestic independence for both homeless and very financially at-risk families living in Los Angeles. The CLF identifies ready-to-move-on homeless families directly from shelters into a new home. After these families the CLF have helped commit to positively changing their lives, they continue to succeed and participate in our other program platforms, creating an amazing network of support and continuity known as the Vita Network

The Learning Platform, which includes our Care through College Program, Dream Mentors and a really great roster of community outings, fosters hope in students striving to achieve their goals, conducting one-on-one, advanced, STEM-focused tutoring sessions to students through elementary, middle and high school age, and providing crucial college scholarships through the McHugh-O’Donovan Shining Stars Scholars Program. Our Dream Mentor Program, new #CodingisCool Initiative and student incentives all work together to create the desire for these students to succeed

The Enriching Platform is made up of wonderful cultural, recreational and outdoor activities, programs and events which provide a sense of belonging, joy and participation in a “real,” positive, abundant and successful life. Whether the experience is enjoying a truly refreshing and exhilarating day at the beach or at a special overnight retreat in the Santa Monica Mountains, attending a great Holiday party (complete with bags of 6 to 8 brand-new toys & gifts for their children) or enjoying countless Family Dinners, fun birthday parties & grad. celebrations, this Enriching Platform is created by these amazing, specialized Field Trips and outings, Camp4All our highly successful summer camp program which has served over 65,000 homeless and at-risk youth and families, and a thriving  Project Angel Wings Holiday Program-starting on Thanksgiving Day and offering amazing holiday experiences and events throughout the month of December.

CLF Facts & Metrics:

  • The CLF has moved and transitioned 45 homeless and highly at-risk families into new homes, and hundreds of lives of at-risk and very low-income families have been transformed with new living quarters and financial aid.
  • Over 47 college scholarships have been awarded to deserving, at-risk teens all across Los Angeles
  • Currently, the CLF has eight students enrolled in college, on scholarship from a special Family Foundation that supports our Care through College Program. (These teens are among the very first in their families to graduate both high school and college.)
  • It is our goal that each child in our Vita Network Program gets as close to their own dreams as possible through our programs. We try to help to instill in them the confidence and belief in themselves, which hopefully helps them to overcome any racial, socio-, or economic barriers they may genuinely experience.
  • Hundreds of amazing, memorable field trips to movies, museums, sporting events, shows, concerts, the circus and outdoor recreational camps have been provided to homeless and at-risk you and their families in LA county.
  • Over One Million Dollars in IN-KIND Donations of TOYS, NEW CLOTHING, FURNITURE, TOILETRIES and GIFTS have been successfully distributed.

Maria D’Angelo is the Founder, President and CEO of the Children’s Lifesaving Foundation. After meeting a few extraordinary children at a South Central LA shelter in 1993, Maria knew that she wanted to change their lives for the better. Her experience as an immigrant in America and the years she spent teaching in New York shaped her vision to provide transitional families with the same sense of hope that she had as a child. Maria’s vision is now supported by her daughter, Francesca McCaffery, who serves as the COO and Director of Development, and her son, Sean McCaffery, who is the Director of Programs, along with the support of volunteers and partner organizations. The CLF also employs a FULL SEASONAL STAFF in the summer months, during our Campp4All Program.
Maria D’Angelo-Founder & President

Maria’s Incredible Journey:


Sean McCaffery-Director of Programs

Francesca McCaffery-Director of Development



The CLF’s Board of Directors is comprised of a great group of people who like to do good for the children
and families we serve with the talents and resources they have available to them. Each member brings
his or her own strengths, value and resources to the table. Our Board Members are our most active “Lifesavers”
and volunteers, coordinators, event chairs and active CLF Fundraisers.

Our Advisory Board is composed of people we can call upon at a moment’s notice- to offer referrals, advise us strategically in many different ways, and help us follow up on new leads on fundraising, or just to meet and brainstorm offer a cup of coffee after a long day.


Meet Our Amazing  “Lifesavers”