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Our History


The House Next Door began as a grassroots organization when several members of the area came together in the early 1970's with concerns about the emerging drug use among the youth in the community. It was incorporated in 1976. The mission of The House Next Door is to promote the healthy development of all people through enhanced family and community relationships.


The House Next Door a multi-faceted family resource center that was founded on, and implemented through, collaborative efforts of the secular and non-secular community.  The House Next Door was conceived by the First Presbyterian Church of DeLand and members of the local community.  The efforts of Dr. Hugh Ash and his congregation exemplified how the secular cooperating with the non-secular could work together for the good of the community.  The House Next Door is evidence that it is appropriated, that it is necessary and that it works.


The House Next Door continues to be a prevention based agency driven by the needs of the community. The House Next Door offers family counseling and programs to Flagler and Volusia counties.  Our mission; “The House Next Door nurtures and empowers families to help build stronger communities.”    As Ann Rogers Fox Grell, our first Executive Director put it, “As we strengthen the individual, we strengthen the family.  "As we strengthen the family, we strengthen the community."


The House Next Door has served more than 50,000 families since 1976, assisting parents in retaining, or in many cases achieving for the first time, strong positive parental leadership and respectful relationships within the family. The programs at The House Next Door serve children in school, the community and their home.


The prevention programs at The House Next Door are based on two models: 1) broad based prevention utilizing parent education, leadership opportunities and drug free alternatives, and 2) targeted prevention for high risk youth with strategies to impact the home, school success, peers and community behavior. Addressing the risk factors and protective factors as identified by David Hawkins is the foundation of every program and the full and active participation of parents is mandatory. The core component of all House Next Door programs is individual and family counseling to strengthen the family unit.

The House Next Door Historical Overview


Two Human Resources Center counselor’s request the use of “the house next door” to the First Presbyterian Church of DeLand for a weekly teenage support group. Rev. Richard Hills grants them permission and makes a decision to study further use of the House.

First Presbyterian Church invests $26,000 to refurbish the building and provide space for what becomes known as The House Next Door.

The House Next Door is incorporated and begins to operate with a $4,000 grant from the Volusia County Mental Health Board, volunteers and Prevention initiative. Ann Rogers is employed as the first Executive Director. 


A grant from the State of Florida’s Children, Youth and Families Program Office provides prevention funds to develop and initiate curriculum “Skills for Living” for adolescents at local schools.


The House Next Door conducts drug and alcohol survey with a prevention component sampling grades 7 through 12 of Volusia County Schools. Results of the survey prompt the Board of Directors to focus programs on family.


Arrangements with our local newspaper, The Beacon, established a weekly column, “Family Matters.”


The agency relocates from the original “House” to a new Home at 121 West Pennsylvania Avenue, the church’s parsonage vacated by the retiring Reverend Hugh Ash.


A grant from the State Department of Education Prevention Center provides the funding for Alpha follow-up services to Alpha graduates.


The administrative offices are moved to a downtown location.


Identifying family violence as a growing concern, the Volusia County Substance Abuse Policy Advisory Board awards a four year grant to subsidize the Family Connections program.


A multi-agency project that includes Volusia County Schools, Florida Health and Rehabilitative Services and Volusia/Flagler Private Industry Council as funders, gives The House Next Door an opportunity to provide a family counseling component to Cooperative Alternative for Success (CAPS) program.


The House Next Door enters into a partnership with the West Volusia Police Athletic League and they establish an afterschool program for elementary children in Spring Hill.


An Orlando Sentinel grant award provides resources for refurbishing and outfitting the Deltona House into a therapy site for The House Next Door.

The agency implements the Families Empowering Families program which gives families in crisis support and counseling to stabilize family conflict and coaches families to become mentors for other families entering the program.


Bob Cook, founder of the Holiday House restaurant chain, donates his building at 804 North Woodland Boulevard to the agency. Cook, a long time benefactor of the agency, used the two story home as Holiday House headquarters. The HND plans to utilize it to house their administrative offices.


The Alpha program is modified, at the request of Volusia Schools, to replace the Alpha Center concept (hub schools) by placing individual Prevention Specialists in select elementary schools. The school system selects five schools to receive the services for two years each.


Ann Rogers Fox Grell semi-retires to return to work directly with families.


The House Next Door hires its second Executive Director, Senta Goudy.


The House Next Door celebrates its 25th Anniversary with a Founder’s Luncheon honoring all its past Presidents and Board of Directors members. The building at 804 North Woodland Boulevard is dedicated in honor of Bob Cook and Reverend Hugh Ash. Ann Grell is honored for her 25 years at the helm of the organization that grew from a church committee to an agency serving 3,500 Volusia and Flagler county families a year.

The House Next Door launches its first web site.


July 1, 2003 The House Next Door becomes nationally accredited. The four-year accreditation is from the Council on Accreditation, an independent organization founded by the Child Welfare League of America to promote quality among child serving agencies.


The House Next Door Family Foundation is formally incorporated. An interlocking Board of Directors is established with Tom Robertson, The House Next Door Treasurer, as its first official president. Ann Rogers Fox Grell served as President prior to its formal incorporation.


Steve Sally is hired by the board of Directors as the agency’s third Executive Director and begins his position on August 1st. He brings over 30 years of progressive child welfare experience working with children and families to the agency.


The agency is approved as a sponsor for the Child Care Food Program by the Department of Health in February. We begin the program by providing services to ten home day care providers who are subsidized for meals and snacks provided for economically challenged children in their homes.

The agency begins a new program entitled Infant Mental Health which is designed to test infants to three years for developmental and emotional delays and to provide corrective intervention strategies for the children.


Stetson University purchases and installs a live audio and video system at our Counseling Center on Pennsylvania Avenue in DeLand. This allows for “live” supervision between our interns/staff and our Clinical Supervisor.

The agency agrees to a two year lease in October to open a state of the art Child Development Center in DeLand. The purposes of this endeavor are twofold: to provide quality child development services for children from six weeks to five years and to create a new revenue stream for the agency that is self-generated to help support the agency.


The Council on Accreditation visits us in May for our four year reaccreditation. We receive a PERFECT score in every major component in all Service standards and Administrative standards! We are now accredited in four different service categories as opposed to one service category as we were previously.


Our reaccreditation by the Council for Accreditation takes place in April, and for the SECOND CONSECUTIVE TIME, we receive a PERFECT score in all Service and Administrative categories from the Accreditation Team!


In September, The House Next Door celebrated our 40th Anniversary with the DeLand community with a night of ceremonies at the Sanborn Center culminating with a five minute fireworks show over the pond and under the stars. The Celebration also raises approximately $11,000 for the agency.


The United Way moves to a new funding model called the Community Impact model which focuses on three areas in which all of their funding will be designated, Health, Education and Economic Stability. We are awarded $100,000 (maximum allowed) for our Trauma Informed therapy and our Therapy department under the Health umbrella and $22,500 for our Homework Club under the education umbrella.


The Board of Directors completes their interview process and hires our Clinical Director, Jennifer Nadelkov as the fourth CEO in The House Next Door's history. On August 13, Jennifer Nadelkov begins her journey as the agency's fourth CEO.


This year was unprecedented due to a worldwide pandemic, COVID-19. All areas of the agency had to pivot to Tele Work and Tele Health. Our LHND was able to remain open and continue serving our families. The CDC provided strict guidelines that we followed, drastically reducing our enrollment. Our WHVA program staff remained in their offices, although the buildings were shut down to clients. The WVHA staff was able to continue processing applications. When COVID began to impact the US more intensely in March, the state of Florida began Distance learning for all students. This occurred while Volusia County students were on spring break. The result is that all students finished the school year online via distance learning. Our Homework Club did not reopen for the remainder of the school year. Additionally, there was no Homework Club summer program due to social distancing requirements.

Another significant event was the Black Lives Matter movement. The nation experienced a profound reaction to racial inequities and social injustice. HND began an agency wide Inclusivity Movement. The goal of this movement is to create opportunities for a more diverse and inclusive workforce where cultural sensitivity and considerations are evident throughout our mission and value statements, as well as our policies and procedures.

Click here to download a pdf with more of our Historical Milestones

Click here to download a pdf of our 25th Anniversary Booklet

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