"Here comes the parade," said William Steiner as child care workers Wednesday morning led 32 infants and toddlers into the just-finished Orangewood Children's Home. The 32 were the last children to move from the Albert Sitton Home next door, which is closing its doors after serving as Orange County's children's home for 26 years.
Steiner, director of Sitton and now of Orangewood, said the new facility can hold up to 170 children and currently houses 159, who range in age from a few months to 17 years. Orangewood has been under construction for two years and cost $7.5 million, all but $1.4 million of it raised from the private sector.
"This has been considered the largest cooperative public-private effort . . . in the country," Steiner said. "It's amazing what can happen when the private sector is involved to this degree."
"Contributions have ranged from pennies to . . . $1 million from William Lyon (chief executive officer of AirCal and chairman of Orangewood's Board)," said board member Tom Santley.