Unity places a priority on supporting the needs of all children and especially those who require special attention because of adverse circumstances. We take on projects that Unity members identify and exert leadership in pursuing. Current projects include:
Black Mountain Home for Children: This home provides a continuum of care for at-risk children and young adults. The staff strives to meet each child’s individual needs in a group setting by assigning tasks and designing activities that promote each child’s strengths and abilities. 37 youth are in residential care and enrolled in public schools. Eight young adults live in the independent “Living Village” and are enrolled in local colleges. The home trains foster parents and licenses foster homes with seven children currently served. Unity’s Construction Crew built a new storage building and restored other structures on campus. In addition, adult and youth volunteers engage in landscaping, painting, and minor repair work on workdays throughout the year. Unity also provides financial support to the home.
Camp Grier: Located in Old Fort, NC, Camp Grier is an ministry of the Presbyterian Church (USA) committed to making outdoor experiences and the gift of the natural world available to all. A summer residential camp is conducted for children in 2nd through 12th grade. Unity has sent work teams to maintain or improve facilities. We provide financial support to current operations as well as capital projects. Because of our support, children from Unity receive a reduced rate for summer camp programs and special events.
Angel Tree Gifts: Each year one of the wonderful traditions at Unity is cover a Christmas tree in angels, each representing the needs of a child in our area. Schools and local agencies such East Lincoln Christian Ministries and Amy’s House identify children or adults who otherwise might not receive any special gifts during the holiday season. Gifts may include toys, clothes, or other needs that have been indicated by parents or sponsors. These gifts are bought by Unity members and returned prior to the Christmas holiday.
Access to Success (A2S): A2S is a non-denominational, nonprofit organization founded by former Davidson College basketball player Andrew Lovedale. A2S seeks to eliminate poverty and provide hope to children through educational, athletic, and spiritual-based initiatives. With its primary focus on Andrew’s home village in Nigeria, A2S supports growth opportunities to other areas as well. Unity actively supports A2S in its annual fundraising event, has provided handmade clothing, tailored to African styles, shoes, and other material needs, and has assisted a Unity member as he participated in several trips to Nigeria to support educational empowerment and basketball training camps.
The Kilgoris Project: Deep in the jungles of Kenya, a group of missionaries started a school in a village that had no school. Today, they run five successful schools in the Kilgoris area and have plans to increase that number to seven over the next few years. All students receive breakfast, lunch and clean water at school and access to well-child check-ups, immunizations and health teaching. The 1,100 children who attend TKP schools are learning and growing. Parents see hope for the future. And the community sees a visible expression of God’s love. A member of Unity travels regularly to Kilgoris to support the education program and the church financially supports this organization. If you would like to join in, visit www.kilgoris.org for more information.
Children at Risk Program: The Unity mission team allocates funds annually to support programs that assist children at risk. The intent is to be able to respond quickly and in a flexible manner to special, unplanned needs that emerge. For example, the team supports the Lincoln County Birdie Program by responding to requests from county social workers for items of personal care to be given to homeless and transient children. Assistance is offered periodically to local organizations such as The Hope House for sex-trafficked teenage girls and to support volunteer mentoring and tutoring at Rock Springs Elementary and North Lincoln Middle School.
Speak Up for Children, Inc.: Each year, dozens of Lincoln County’s children are removed from their homes and placed under Department of Social Services custody as the result of abuse or neglect. The court assigns a volunteer advocate for each child. Children in foster homes often have many unmet needs such as special clothes, sports equipment, and recreational activities. Unity donates money to support a grant intended to meet some of these needs. We help fund special projects such as development of a county picnic/play area (next to the Department of Social Services,) that offers an outdoor space for weekly, supervised visits of biological parents with their children in foster care. For more information, visit www.speakupforchildren.us.
Children’s Hope Alliance: Located in Banner Elk (Grandfather Home for Children) and Barium Springs, NC (Barium Springs Home for Children), this nonprofit agency serves severely abused, neglected, and disabled children from birth through age 18. Approximately 3,500 at-risk children and 350 foster families are located throughout NC. Unity provides direct financial support and periodically sends work groups – both adult and youth — for special volunteer projects to assist this agency as they work to see to the needs of these children.