7345 Red Oak Road, Union City, GA 30291 | 770-964-3301 |

News

Christian City to Showcase Patio Homes for Active Seniors

(Union City, Ga – August 2, 2018) Active seniors considering moving to a retirement community are invited to tour available patio homes during an open house event at Christian City on Saturday, August 18, 9 am – 1 pm. “We have a number of one and two-bedroom patio homes that are move-in-ready and available for lease now,” said Jane Finch, Executive Director of Active Senior Living at Christian City.

There are four neighborhoods of patio homes on the 500-acre Christian City campus, located in south Fulton County between Fairburn and Fayetteville. Active seniors over the age of 60 can lease a home for life.

“Our program allows the resident to pay a one-time amount to lease a home for the remainder of his or her life,” says Finch. Utilities are included for select communities. And a monthly maintenance fee covers trash removal, recycling, pest control, and general maintenance service.

Amenities available to residents include a strengthening center, indoor swimming pool, walking paths, planned activities, events and classes at the recreation center. Arts Alliance member and volunteer chaplain Jan Gwaltney has enjoyed living in her patio home at Christian City for eight years. “Christian City is not just affordable. It’s a special, neighborly place to live,” she says. “From live concerts and resident art shows to recreational activities and classes, there is always something to do. We look out for our neighbors, and I feel safe here,” Gwaltney says.

The open house event will be held on Saturday, August 18, from 9 am to 1 pm, in the clubhouse at Christian City’s Hilltop Acres Active Senior Living neighborhood, located at 7500 Lester Road in Union City. For more information, visit www.christiancity.org or call 770-703-2683.

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Christian City Residents Celebrate Independence Day with Golf Cart Parade

July 7 was a great day for community fellowship at Christian City! More than 120 senior residents, children, house parents and staff members joined together at the Christian City Recreation Center to celebrate Independence Day. A campus-wide parade of patriotically decorated golf carts driven by senior residents was followed by a block party with a cookout and live music by the Newnan Brass Band.

“We have over 90 veterans living at Christian City,” said Len Romano, President & CEO. “This event was a great way to bring our residents together to not only celebrate America’s birth but also honor the men and women who have helped preserve our freedom through their service in the military,” Romano said.

Residents of the Assisted Living and Skilled Nursing Centers waved and took pictures as the golf carts passed by their buildings. The parade then circled through the patio homes, apartment communities, and Children’s Village before finishing at the Recreation Center.

Jacquelyn Jackson, a resident of the Garden Terrace community at Christian City for four years, enjoyed shopping at Graceland Thrift Store’s grand reopening sale on Saturday before joining her neighbors at the block party. What’s her favorite thing about Christian City? Without hesitation, Ms. Jackson says, “The people!”

No doubt, the neighborly environment at Christian City draws many retirees to the community. Brenda Mueller enjoyed visiting her friends at Christian City before moving in four years ago. Now they are neighbors. “When I saw the name Mueller on the fire hydrant outside my home, I decided this must be the right place for me,” said Brenda with her trademark sense of humor and quick wit. Don’t call her a retiree though. Brenda has been employed as a bus monitor for Fayette County Schools for the past 12 years and has no plans to retire any time soon. “I love my work,” she said.

Her active lifestyle doesn’t stop when she arrives home at Christian City. Ms. Mueller loves to take walks with her dogs who prefer to create their own route rather than following the marked walking paths throughout the campus. “I let them decide where we’re going to walk each day,” she said.

Saturday’s block party and cookout were centered around the new Recreation Center, which is a recently remodeled ranch-style brick home built during the early days of Christian City’s Home for Children. The roof was raised and interior walls removed to provide a large open space for a billiard table, coffee bar and bistro tables, big-screen TV and a comfortable seating area for conversation. Just outside, residents can enjoy a game of bocce ball or shuffleboard, practice a few shots on the putting green, or stretch their legs on the cushioned walking path.

Campus Recreation Director, Tyler Wright, enjoys seeing active senior residents coming together for fun and fellowship in the new building. “Residents like having a place to play cards, Bingo, Yahtzee and board games with their friends and neighbors. Last week, a group of men gathered here to watch the Atlanta Braves game and have lunch together. We also host lots of educational classes on a variety of topics from art and crafts to computers,” Wright said.

Reliable volunteers like Danny and Debbie O’Neal and Van and Brenda Williams, make hosting big events possible. For Saturday’s event, the O’Neals created a fun photo background and fully decorated the Rec Center in red, white and blue. Both couples arrived early to set up and stayed late to clean up. “I don’t know what I would do without the generous volunteer efforts of our residents who offer to help,” Wright said.

Living at Christian City is a family affair for Van Williams, four of his siblings and two nieces, all residents of Christian City. They meet for lunch every day. Van’s sister, Doris Haynie, has lived in the Dogwood Circle community for 17 years, and it’s no surprise that her favorite thing about living at Christian City is being with family.

Before Doris and her husband retired and moved to Christian City, she led the hospital auxiliary for about 17 years in Habersham County, located in the north Georgia mountains. Her husband was employed by the state taking care of Georgia’s historical sites. Doris knows a thing or two about organizing people and events, but now she enjoys participating in the activities planned for Christian City residents. “Riding in the breeze on the golf cart this morning and seeing people along the way was great,” said Doris.

As the Independence Day celebration reached high gear, the circle of friends gathered in the Rec Center grew larger. Brenda Mueller and six of her neighbors in the Dogwood community – Gerry Stone, Eloise Barter, Lee Carder, Sue Loyd, Annie Scarbrough and Jerry Jacobs – laughed and joked about memorable housewarming gifts, Merle Norman babies, nicknames, Rummikub games and a life-size cardboard cutout of Clint Eastwood. No doubt, this close-knit group of neighbors looks out for one another and enjoys life to the fullest. “Decorating and driving the golf cart was a lot of fun today. I especially enjoyed blowing the horn!” Brenda said with a bold laugh.

In fact, boldness, zeal, and longevity are common traits among many Christian City residents. 94-year-old Louise Brown, who started the golf cart parade years ago when she was a patio home resident, enjoyed serving as the parade caboose in this year’s Independence Day parade. Louise is part of the sibling group mentioned earlier. Now a resident of Christian City Assisted Living Center, she participates in water aerobics every morning and enjoys driving her golf cart around campus. When asked at lunchtime about her favorite part of Saturday’s event, Louise said, “It’s not over yet!” That’s the Christian City spirit – always looking forward to what comes next!

About Christian City

Christian City was established 53 years ago when the first cottage for abused and abandoned children opened on Valentine’s Day, 1965. Today, there are more than 1,000 residents, both children and senior adults, living at Christian City, a nonprofit organization that depends on the generosity of donors for financial support. The 500-acre campus in South Fulton County includes the Children’s Village, Safe Place program, Crossroads Foster Care & Adoption program, patio homes and apartments for active seniors, a skilled nursing center, assisted living center, memory care, home health and hospice care. An open house showcasing available patio homes will be held on Saturday, August 18, 9am-1pm. For more information about the open house, call 770-703-2683. For general information, visit www.christiancity.org or call 770-703-AMEN.

PHOTO (by Larry Regier): Active senior resident, Jan Gwaltney, waves to her neighbors as the Independence Day golf cart parade passes through one of the patio home communities at Christian City.

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Christian City Launches Crossroads Foster Care & Adoption Program

In Georgia, there are currently over 15,000 children in the foster care system. This number has doubled within the past five years due to the ever-growing opioid epidemic. Christian City recognized this issue and in February of 2018, launched the Crossroads Foster Care & Adoption Program to provide private and public foster care, foster-to-adoption and public adoption for children within a 50-mile radius of their location, which is just south of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport.

“We wanted to respond to this issue by increasing the number of loving homes available to children in foster care and that is when we decided to launch the Crossroads program,” said Len Romano, President & CEO of Christian City.

The program is designed to help children from newborns to the age of 21 years find a loving home. The Crossroads Program provides families who are interested in adoption or foster care with initial training, home study, 24/7 on-call support and unlimited access to Christian City’s thrift store and pantry.  These services are provided to ensure the foster children and families have specialized care and support.

“We offer a crisis program for the foster child and adoptive parents. If a caregiver reports to us the child is under distress when acclimating to their new environment, we bring the child back onto the Christian City Children’s Village campus for 48 hours. Here, we give the child the attention and any skills they may need to help them reintegrate into their new home,” said Michaela Guthrie, Program Executive for the Crossroads Foster Care and Adoption Program.

Starting July 1st, Christian City will have a contract with the state to help the Georgia Division of Family and Children Services place children in foster care or adoptive homes.

More information on the Christian City Children’s Village Crossroads Foster Care & Adoptive Program is available at https://christiancity.org/crossroads/.  Interested parties may also reach out to Program Executive Michaela Guthrie at mguthrie@christiancity.org or 770-336-6566

About Christian City

Christian City was established 53 years ago when the first cottage for abused and abandoned children opened on Valentine’s Day, 1965. Today, there are more than 1,000 residents, both children, and older adults, living at Christian City, a nonprofit organization that depends on the generosity of donors for financial support. The 500-acre campus, located 15 minutes from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, includes the Children’s Village Residential Program, Safe Place Program, Transitional Living Program, Crossroads Foster Care & Adoption Program, patio homes and apartments for active seniors, a skilled nursing center, assisted living center, memory care, home health and hospice care. For more information, visit www.christiancity.org or call 770-703-2636.

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Christian City is Recognized with a 2018 Platinum Seal of Transparency

Christian City was recently recognized with a 2018 Platinum Seal of transparency on their GuideStar Nonprofit Profile. Attained by only about a quarter of nonprofits, this is one of the highest honors from GuideStar.

“We’re thrilled to be recognized with the Platinum Seal of transparency by GuideStar,” said Christian City President & CEO Len Romano.  “Our community members and potential donors can look online to learn more about our organization and what we’re trying to accomplish to make a difference in Georgia.” GuideStar is the world’s largest source of information on nonprofit organizations. More than 8 million visitors per year and a network of 200+ partners use GuideStar data to grow support for nonprofits.

“We are very serious about how we manage our donors’ monies, and always strive to be excellent stewards of their investment in our mission.  Recognition from GuideStar provides an assurance to donors and prospective donors that Christian City is transparent in our operations and financial management.  It is one way that we can show that gifts to Christian City are wise investments,” says chief development officer LaVann Landrum.

Christian City’s GuideStar nonprofit profile is available at https://www.guidestar.org/profile/58-0917609.

About Christian City

Christian City was established 53 years ago when the first cottage for abused and abandoned children opened on Valentine’s Day, 1965. Today, there are more than 1,000 residents, both children, and older adults, living at Christian City, a nonprofit organization that depends on the generosity of donors for financial support. The 500-acre campus, located 15 minutes from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, includes the Children’s Village Residential Program, Safe Place Program, Transitional Living Program, Crossroads Foster Care & Adoption Program, patio homes and apartments for active seniors, a skilled nursing center, assisted living center, memory care, home health and hospice care. For more information, visit www.christiancity.org or call 770-703-AMEN.

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Drive & Dine event raises $250,147 for Christian City Children’s Village

Want to see photos from our event?

Click on the graphic above for photos by Larry Regier

Click here for photos by Chris Rank

Did you get a chance to go for a ride? Find yourself in the riding gallery!

410 guests joined together on April 28 for the inaugural Drive & Dine event at Porsche Experience Center Atlanta to raise $250,147 in support of Christian City Children’s Village and the Safe Place program. Event proceeds will help provide abandoned, abused, runaway and homeless youth a safe home in a loving family environment to heal their wounded spirits and thrive at Christian City Children’s Village. The South Fulton non-profit serves the entire metro Atlanta area and beyond.

Following a VIP reception among vintage Porsches in the Classic Car Gallery, guests had an opportunity to take a thrill ride around the 1.6-mile driver development track with a professional driver at the wheel. Cheryl Preheim, the evening anchor of WXIA 11Alive News, served as emcee. As she welcomed guests at dinner, Cheryl said, “That ride was every bit as thrilling as any roller coaster I’ve ever ridden! Now I understand what the term performance vehicle really means!”

Porsche Experience Center is part of the 27-acre Porsche Cars North America headquarters adjacent to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. The construction of the new headquarters in 2015 was Porsche’s largest investment outside of Germany. “We are thrilled to be able to invite our guests to experience this beautiful and unique venue while making a difference for children in need,” said LaVann Landrum, Chief Development Officer of Christian City.

With a dramatic backdrop of flight departures and landings at the world’s busiest airport, event chairs, Taylor and Anne Josey, took the stage. Philanthropists and residents of Newnan, the Joseys thanked guests for joining them in supporting Drive & Dine.

Taylor Josey is a commercial real estate professional and founding partner of Josey, Young & Brady Realty. He thanked sponsors and volunteers for answering the call to help fulfill the critical needs at Christian City Children’s Village and the Safe Place program. “Unfortunately, we are all aware that Atlanta is one of the top locations in this country for human trafficking,” Anne said. She continued by sharing a list of heartbreaking statistics:

  • Within the first 48 hours on the street, 33% of children are lured by sex traffickers. The number jumps to 90% when the youth remain on the streets.
  • For both boys and girls, the average age of a child who is trafficked is 11-14.
  • Sex trafficking is a $32-$50 billion profit industry in the U.S.
  • The average remaining lifespan of a child once lured into sex trafficking is only 7 years.

Christian City Children’s Village is a licensed agency of the National Safe Place Program. Partnering with QuikTrip convenience stores, local fire stations, law enforcement agencies and recreation centers throughout metro Atlanta, staff and volunteers provide immediate support and safety for runaway and homeless youth. “We are so thankful to Christian City for stepping to the forefront to rescue these children and bring them to safety. Safe Place is one way we can prevent children from becoming victims of the sex trafficking industry,” Anne concluded.

Cheryl Preheim introduced Len Romano, President and CEO of Christian City, saying, “There is a peace in the place at Christian City. Len Romano is clearly working at his passion in leading this organization.” Romano joined Christian City in 2015 after a 36-year career with the YMCA. “You can’t give love if you haven’t received love,” he said. “We help abused and abandoned children experience love – sometimes for the first time,” Romano continued, “We want our kids to have the ‘eye of the tiger,’ and that comes from having hope. When they have hope, they can have a better life.”

Sarah Booth, Program Executive of the Residential, Safe Place and Transitional Living Programs, is a shining example of the difference Christian City Children’s Village can make in a child’s life. “I came to live at the Children’s Village when I was twelve,” she said. “In the beginning, I didn’t love it, but that changed.”

Sarah graduated high school and Emory University’s Goizueta School of Business. After a few years working in Atlanta, she came back “home” to Christian City to become Director of Safe Place. Since then, she has earned a Master’s degree in professional counseling and was recently promoted to Program Executive. Sarah stressed the need for volunteers and funding for basic food, clothing, and shelter. “It takes $4 million per year to run the Children’s Village,” she said, sharing that she can relate to the children in her care today. Please know this program matters,” Sarah said to the crowd. “You guys have a chance to change the trajectory of a life.”

Landrum was overjoyed to see so many people from the community investing in the Children’s Village through the inaugural Drive & Dine event. “We sold all 400 seats well before the event date,” Landrum said. “The support from sponsors, volunteers and attendees has been phenomenal,” she said.

Drive & Dine also featured a silent and live auction. Four pieces of art by Atlanta artist, Ruth Barrett, were featured in the live auction along with several unique travel packages. As Ruth took the stage, she said, “I feel very blessed to be an artist in Atlanta. When I paint, I ask God to create through me. I like to paint roads, because we are all on a journey, moving toward light and hope,” Barrett said. “I like to empower children to use their gifts, too,” she said. Over the past couple of months, Ruth worked with the youth at Christian City Children’s Village to coach them in developing their own art creations. She then grouped their art into theme-related pieces presented in the silent auction at Drive & Dine. George Franco, Fox 5 News reporter, served as auctioneer.

Dinner guests also heard from one of the top sponsors of the event, Steve and Marie Swope. Steve is the former Chairman & CEO of The Rubicon Group and currently serves with the Archdiocese of Atlanta.

Addressing the guests of Drive & Dine, the Swopes expressed their desire to support organizations that make a profound difference. “God placed each of us on this planet to make a difference,” Steve said. “Everything we do every day of our lives is for ourselves or for someone else. I heard recently that we need to decide if we are pilgrims or tourists. Pilgrims make their communities better,” he said. Before leaving the stage, the Swopes invited the crowd to “join them as pilgrims on the journey.”

About Christian City

Christian City was established 53 years ago when the first cottage for abused and abandoned children opened on Valentine’s Day, 1965. Today, there are more than 1,000 residents, both children and older adults, living at Christian City, a nonprofit organization that depends on the generosity of donors for financial support. The 500-acre campus, located 15 minutes from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, includes the Children’s Village Residential Program, Safe Place Program, Transitional Living Program, Crossroads Foster Care & Adoption Program, patio homes and apartments for active seniors, a skilled nursing center, assisted living center, memory care, home health and hospice care. For more information, visit www.christiancity.org or call 770-703-AMEN.

(All photos below by Larry Regier)

Steve Swope, a top sponsor of Drive & Dine, takes a thrill ride with a professional driver around the 1.6-mile driver development track at Porsche Experience Center Atlanta.

 

The inaugural Drive & Dine event to benefit Christian City Children’s Village was held at Porsche Experience Center Atlanta, part of the 27-acre Porsche Cars North America headquarters located adjacent to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. The construction of the new headquarters in 2015 was Porsche’s largest investment outside of Germany.

 

Many guests raise their hands in response to questions from Len Romano, President & CEO of Christian City. “We help abused and abandoned children experience love – sometimes for the first time,” Romano said.

 

Four pieces of art by Atlanta artist, Ruth Barrett, were featured in the live auction at Drive & Dine. On stage with auctioneer George Franco, Ruth said, “I feel very blessed to be an artist in Atlanta. When I paint, I ask God to create through me. I like to paint roads, because we are all on a journey, moving toward light and hope.”

 

Co-chairs of the inaugural Drive & Dine event, Taylor and Anne Josey (left), residents of Newnan, announce 2019 Drive & Dine co-chairs, Kenn and Alison Bruley, residents of Atlanta.

 

During the VIP reception in the Porsche Classic Car Gallery, Delores Epps (left), Vice Chair of Christian City’s Board of Trustees and Drive & Dine Planning Committee Logistics Chair, chats with Emcee, Cheryl Preheim, evening anchor of WXIA 11Alive News, and LaVann Landrum, Chief Development Officer at Christian City.

 

A current resident of Christian City Children’s Village, Paris will graduate from high school this year. “I don’t know where I would be if I had not found the Safe Place Program and Christian City Children’s Village,” Paris said from the podium at the Drive & Dine event.

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Ruth Barrett lends talents to charity

Ruth Barrett is featured on AJC for her amazing dedication to Christian City and her wonderful talent for art. Click here to read her story.

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Swopes Interview on ATL & Co.

Christian City is featured on 11Alive!

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Do You Have a Need for Speed?

Event Co-Chair, Anne Josey, invites you to satisfy your need for speed at the Drive & Dine Event at Porsche Experience Center Atlanta on April 28th! Click the video to hear more.

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