Fulfilling a Catholic Legacy

Core Values

We believe that compassionate, high quality behavioral healthcare services can best be provided by being faithful to our Core Values of respect, justice, compassion, integrity, quality and confidentiality. The Center’s Core Values are based upon a Catholic identity that is a vital link to the Catholic heritage established by the Center’s original benefactor, a Catholic businessman who left his estate to "...found, establish, erect, and equip… a Home and School of Arts and Trades for Orphan Boys."

The Center's services transcend denominational distinctions, and the Center welcomes all youth in need of its services and all staff willing to be committed to the Center's Core Values.


Our History


1924Norfolk businessman Frederick Robinson dies, leaving a will stipulating the creation of a Catholic charitable trust for orphan boys.
1933The James Barry Robinson Home for Boys, a Catholic school, is dedicated on December 8th.
1934 – 1977The Catholic boarding school is opened to boys of all faiths and is operated by priests living on the grounds.
Early 1960'sThe 11th and 12th grades are added. The school produces its first graduating class in 1962. Enrollment peaks around 100 students.
1977-1986The school becomes The James Barry-Robinson Institute. This organization serves boys ages 12-18 who are experiencing emotional, behavioral, educational or social problems.
1986The James Barry Robinson Home for Boys Trust enters into a joint venture agreement with a local hospital to expand services. The Institute is renamed The Barry Robinson Center. New buildings allow services for girls and boys ages 6 to 18 in a 72-bed setting.
2006The Trust assumes sole responsibility for operating The Barry Robinson Center, which has grown into a behavioral health system for youth with a 72-bed psychiatric residential treatment facility, in-home counseling services, therapeutic foster care, independent living, and prevention services.
2007The Most Reverend Francis X. DiLorenzo, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Richmond, recognizes The Barry Robinson Center as an independent Catholic institution. In restoring its original tie to the Catholic Church, the Center rejoins other faith-based behavioral health organizations across America with similar history.