School’s donation drive a ‘win-win’
by Lindsay Field
August 18, 2012 11:52 PM | 2697 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Juan Abarca, works with his uncle, Juan Torres, background, to replace the flooring on the first floor of the administrative building for Calvary Children's Home in Powder Springs on Thursday.  <br> Photo by Jon-Michael Sullivan
Juan Abarca, works with his uncle, Juan Torres, background, to replace the flooring on the first floor of the administrative building for Calvary Children's Home in Powder Springs on Thursday.
Photo by Jon-Michael Sullivan
slideshow
Damage from the flooding. <br> Photo special to the MDJ
Damage from the flooding.
Photo special to the MDJ
slideshow
POWDER SPRINGS — Students and parents at Lost Mountain Middle School are giving back to a local children’s home where nearly 10 of their classmates live after a flood destroyed three floors of the building that houses the office and storage space and donated items for the young residents.

“Lost Mountain is a very giving community, and I can’t imagine a better way to give back,” said sixth-grade parent Ami Monday, who co-chairs the school’s community outreach program with Kari Pascoe. “It’s a win-win.”

The school put a collection barrel in the front office Thursday so students and parents could bring items to help out the 21 people between the ages of 5 and 20 living at the Calvary Children’s Home off Lost Mountain Road in Powder Springs.

“While we like to do community outreach projects that benefit as many as possible, we also like them to benefit our immediate family at Lost Mountain,” Monday said.

Participants are asked to donate:

* Baby clothes: 9 to 12 months and 3T to 4T in boys

* Shoes: sizes 4½ 10½, 12½ and 13 wide in boys; 6½ to 12 in men’s; 2 in girls; and 6 ½ to 11 in women’s

* Clothes:x30 and 32x32 in men’s; sizes 12 to 16 in girls; sizes 1 to 7 in girls juniors; sizes 6 to 12 misses; and misses petite

* Personal care items: shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, body wash and toothpaste/toothbrushes

* Gift cards: Sports Academy, Sports Authority, Dicks, Hibbett’s Sports, Target, American Eagle, Gap, Justice, Aeropostale and Famous Footwear

The front-office clerk will be accepting envelopes for gift cards or monetary donations, and items will be collected during school hours over the next three weeks. Monday also said they will work with families if they need to make arrangements to pick up items.

On June 30, when temperatures in metro Atlanta passed 100 degrees, a fire sprinkler in the attic of the administrative building was triggered for more than 20 minutes, flooding the facility, said Snyder Turner, the home’s executive director.

“The sprinkler head activated, and when it gets a certain degree it releases the flow of water,” he said. “It was set to go off at 155 degrees.”

He said the third-floor storage area, office area, dining hall and library were flooded, ruining not only computers and books but also the clothes, games and toys that people have donated to the children in the home.

“We didn’t say anything about (needing help), but church groups, civic clubs and schools have started to make donations,” he said. “That sends an incredible message to our children, that they matter to somebody and to be able to see that and see the people driving up in the yard and see the enthusiasm and charity is encouraging to our staff and our children.”

As far as the reconstruction goes, Turner said he “sees the light at the end of the tunnel” and they should be back up and running in the next few weeks.

“It’s been kind of an interesting journey,” he said. “We’ve been working off plywood floors here in the building.”

Turner’s father, the late Rev. Ben Turner, started the children’s home in June 1966. It was initially opened in Smyrna before moving to Powder Springs in 1997 and is now located on 13 acres of land donated by Mr. and Mrs. Dwight Vaughan.

The home is a long-term residential care facility for children who need to be removed from their families and is designed to help young people, typically for two years at a time, between ages 5 and 20.

For more information about the home or how to make a donation, visit www.calvarykids.org.
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