Tag Archives: the children’s home

Results of the Labor of Love at The Children’s Home

Last February anyone who reads this blog probably got a little tired of me constantly writing about the Labor of Love project the Triad Apartment Association (the organization that pays me to work for them for some reason) took on at The Children's Home.  Well, we had no idea that Fox 8 was going to do a story about how The Children's Home is using the building but it sure made our weekend when it aired.  

BTW, you'll note in the story that they're looking to renovate another floor so they can house more kids.  We actually fixed up every floor in the building, but my understanding is that there are lots of additional safety measures that have to be in place in order to move kids in.  They are looking for $10,000-$15,000 to get that done so if you want to help out you can do so by contacting The Children's Home, or if you want just drop me a note and I'll hook you up with the appropriate people at the Home.



That room that she mentions is her favorite?  Well it was my favorite too.  Here's a photo gallery of all the work that was done to get it to its current state:

Children’s Home and WSFCS School Collaboration

Given the people spearheading this effort, George Bryan and Ted Burcaw, I'd say the new school being opened at The Children's Home stands a really good chance of working.  I was able to spend a bit of time with George during my organization's project at TCH and I've met Ted, who is the brother of a good friend of mine, on a few occasions.  Let's just say that both guys bring some serious wattage to the endeavor and that, in addition to this being a good idea in general, will go a long way towards helping the school succeed. 

From the article:

Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools and The Children's Home are entering into a partnership that will enable students to benefit not only from extra attention from teachers and mental-health professionals but also from being on a 212-acre campus on Reynolda Road that has a functioning farm.

"We will be able to do things for kids that nobody else has been able to do," said Principal Ted Burcaw…

Officials don't know yet how many students will go to Kingswood when it opens for the 2010-11 school year. The school is intended to serve no more than 150 students. It will have seven teachers provided by the school system, and each class will also have a mental-health professional from staff at the Children's Home.

"These folks already have experience with the types of children we're talking about," Bryan said.

Outside of class, students will have the opportunity to work with the Children's Home's psychiatrists, psychologists and therapists. And, when appropriate, parents will be invited in for family counseling.

Update (July 13, 2010): A commenter asked how to get her elementary school-aged grandkids enrolled at the school. I passed the question along to Theo Helm at WSFCS and here's his reply:

Jon — The school will serve students in grades 6-12 next year, so it's too early for Ms. Hall to register her children. Generally speaking, it will serve students who have more involved mental health needs. Most students will either be referred there (through the IEP, or Individualized Education Plan, process that serves exceptional children or through a mental health referral) or assigned there (through the discipline process). It will also serve children who live at the group home at The Children's Home. Although there will be some parental choice, students will still generally need to be those who need more involved services.

Very Berry at The Children’s Home

The Journal's Michael Hastings writes today about the strawberry patch at The Children's Home in Winston-Salem, and I'd like to personally vouch for the greatness of those berries.  Last Saturday I was at The Children's Home to help give a presentation to The Children's Home Alumni Association about the Labor of Love project the organization I work for did back in February.  The folks at The Children's Home fed us some of the first berries picked from the patch and I can tell you they blow away any of the store bought strawberries I've had this year.  Seriously, you need to head over to TCH and get yourself some. 

Governor’s Volunteer Service Award

Remember a couple of months back how I wrote, incessantly some would say, about the Labor of Love project the Triad Apartment Association (my day job) was doing at The Children's Home?  Well, the folks at The Children's Home were kind enough to nominate us for a Governor's Volunteer Service Award and a bunch of us will be attending a breakfast for the Forsyth County nominees on April 29.  The project was highly rewarding in its own right, but the award process is very exciting too.  We're very grateful to the folks at The Children's Home for nominating us and hopefully we'll do them proud!

Nice Article on Labor of Love

Kim Underwood wrote a nice article for the Winston-Salem Journal about TAA's Labor of Love project at The Children's Home.  As I wrote before, this is one of the most amazing projects I've ever been involved with and I think the article really helps explain why:

The cottage is needed because last Sept. 1, the Children's Home took over the operation of Opportunity House, a nine-bed emergency shelter for young people on Brookstown Avenue. The shelter had been run by the Youth Opportunities organization.

"The intention from Day One was to move that facility on campus," said George Bryan, the president and chief executive of the Children's Home…

When the Children Home agreed to take over the shelter, Bryan estimated that it could take $150,000 to renovate the 10,000-square-foot Stultz Cottage. With no money available, immediate action wasn't possible.

Along came Marc Crouse, a member of the apartment association who volunteers at the home and is in the process of adopting a young person who has been living there. When he approached Bryan about the association doing something at the home for this year's "Labor of Love" project, Bryan thought that fixing up the cottage for the program would be just the thing.

"From the first, we are considering this a miracle," Bryan said.

Labor of Love is a True Highlight

This weekend was the kick off for a project that I'm already sure will be one of the highlights of my career.  The organization I work for, Triad Apartment Association, is doing it's annual Labor of Love project and this year it really is audacious.  We're taking on a three story building at The Children's Home that has been vacant for over 25 years and fixing it up so that it can be used to house children that the Home serves.  The project includes cleaning and painting every room, installing new carpet, replacing outlets and light switches, repairing all plumbing fixtures, re-glazing all bathroom tiles, replacing/repairing floor tiles, repairing and refinishing a parquet floor, removing an interior wall from one room, installing new appliances, installing 9 new ceiling fans, repairing exterior woodwork, providing new furniture and installing new landscaping. What makes it so incredibly rewarding is that all of the materials, time and money have been donated by companies and individuals involved with TAA, and even more remarkably, people in the community who somehow heard about it and volunteered to help.

We're getting all this done in four days, Feb 12-13 and 19-20, which you'd think would be impossible until you consider that on the 12th we had over 70 people show up to help and on the 13th we had over 90. We're expecting just as many, if not more, next weekend.  We had so many people that we had enough to go out and do other projects on The Children's Home grounds.  

One of our volunteers is a woman who grew up at The Children's Home and lived in the building that we're working on.  I can't even describe the feeling of standing in a room with her as she painted a window and told a story about her first night at the Home spent in that very room and how it changed her life.  It gives me goosebumps just thinking about it.

There aren't words appropriate enough to describe what all of these volunteers have given The Children's Home, so to those of you who have participated please accept these humble words: Thank you! If you would like to help with The Labor of Love you still can and please feel free to shoot me an email if you're interested.  Otherwise there is always a need for volunteers at The Children's Home and there's plenty of information on how to help at their website

Helping The Children’s Home

This actually has to do with my day job.  The Triad Apartment Association (TAA) is gearing up for it's annual Labor of Love and this year we'll be working with The Children's Home to fix up a building that's been vacant for over 25 years so that it can be used as transitional housing for kids who turn 18. 

As things currently stand when a child turns 18 they are pretty much on their own.  I don't know about you, but if I'd been left to my own devices at 18 I would have been in a world of hurt.  The Children's Home envisions taking this refurbished building and using it as a place to temporarily house the 18 year-olds while they learn how to make their way in the world.

The TAA is going to take several teams of volunteers to clean up, paint, fix the landscaping and make repairs to the building over two weekends in February.  We're in the process of organizing our teams and gathering supplies for the project.  To give you an idea of the scope of this project we anticipate using a minimum of 200 gallons of paint and having dozens of volunteers on site at any given time. 

One of the most exciting aspects of this project is that we keep getting donations and volunteers by word of mouth even though we haven't really been pushing it to this point.  I can't tell you how many calls we've gotten from "friends of friends" who want to know how they can get involved.  What I've been telling them is that we will happily take donations of supplies, or money (financial donations go directly to The Children's Home for the project), to help with the project.  If we get a duplication of donations, say for kitchen appliances, then we've been assured that The Children's Home can find a use for them.  If you have any interest in helping out please feel free to contact our office at (336) 294-4428 or visit our web page about the project here

I wasn't yet at TAA when we did the 2009 Labor of Love so I'm REALLY stoked about this year's project.