Every Day Above Ground is a Great Day

“Above Ground”

I know what it’s like to feel sad and down
To feel like you don’t belong in your town
You can’t smile or laugh, only frown
You ask yourself, “Why me? I’m only a child”

As the days pass, you cry and weep
You never want to do anything at all but sleep
You’re tired of everyone looking at you like a creep
You’re trying to climb the hill, but it’s too steep

You want to leave but have nowhere to go
The days get longer and the weeks so slow
You have no role models, mentors, and no coach
Feeling like there’s no light, not even the stars glow.

Feeling like you’re ready to die, as if you are old
Or like a house of cards, just ready to fold
Everything will be okay with a little time so we’ve been told
But those words are like food… wait too long and it gets cold

I’ve been through it all, easy and rough
But don’t give up, you’ve got to stay tough
Let everyone know that you’re not just a bluff
You can play the game without a glove

So keep your head up, your crown might fall
Put your game face on, hustle, grind, and get the ball
Do what you love and wait on your call
You think I’m done but that’s not all

People say the sky is our limit
But we’re going way past the sky
It might not be today, but we’ll never stop trying
One day we’ll be so high up you will think we are flying
So remember that next time you feel like dying

Always remember the words I have said
Every day let them repeat in your head
So next time you feel down, you can say instead,
“Any day above ground is a great day!” that is what Jason H. said
(or Pitbull) heehee

 

Every Day Above Ground is a Great Day

When first meeting Jason, you would believe he was just like any other 15 year old. He likes to hang out with his friends and play sports. But once you get to know him, you realize he is a young man full of maturity and wisdom. After living at Carpenter’s Way Ranch for four years, Jason wrote the poem shown above. The title of the poem, “Above Ground,” ties Jason’s life and his experiences at Carpenter’s Way Ranch together.

The title was inspired by a Pitbull song that says “every day above ground is a great day.” This is Jason’s life motto, and he uses it as a reminder to have a positive outlook on life. This poem symbolizes what a positive attitude can do for a person and is an encouragement to other young people going through struggles in life.

Jason credits his success at Carpenter’s Way Ranch to a few role models among others: Nick Alford, DeMarcus Smith, Dwayne Jenkins, and Mr. Al. Throughout his life and his time at Carpenter’s Way Ranch, Jason has been passionate about sports, playing football, basketball, and running track at Harris County High School. He also participates in band and choir. Jason was recently placed with a family in the Columbus area. We are so proud of Jason and all of the great things he has accomplished while at Carpenter’s Way Ranch and we look forward to his future!

Robert — Just Keep Swimming

img_0299Robert came to live at The Methodist Home one year ago and the improvements we have seen since then have been astounding. You can easily see our mission of restoring childhoods come to life in Robert. From an attitude of defiance and anger to a life full of freedom and opportunities, he has been transformed!

Just like any other young boy, Robert enjoys video games, swimming, and playing with friends. Since coming to The Methodist Home, Robert has become more people-oriented and shows this by selflessly helping others.

He looks up to several people at The Home as positive role models, especially his Program Manager, Mr. Vashun.

Robert is also very smart, winning an award for Milestones improvements in all subjects of Price Academy. Even though he finds science most interesting, he increased his grades in all subjects during the last school year.

He is full of energy, ready to embrace whatever life throws his way. Although Robert still faces struggles, the challenges he has overcome in a short amount of time is incredible.

At The Methodist Home we encourage our kids to dream big and Robert is no exception. He has aspirations to one day become an Olympic swimmer. With his natural leadership skills and energetic personality, we have no doubt he has the potential to achieve his goals and set a positive example for young boys who have been in his shoes. Thank you for helping us empower our children!

Veteran Honored at Alumni Day

img_0605The Methodist Home Alumni honored James Kent at its annual Homecoming. Mr. Kent is the last of the WWII veterans who grew up in The Methodist Home in Macon, Georgia. Mr. Kent was a resident of The Home from 1929-1940 when he joined the Army. He entered as a private and was discharged as a major. He was wounded and captured by German forces in Italy and later transferred to Germany where he remained a Prisoner of War for nearly two years. Mr. Kent was awarded three medals: Silverstar, the third highest medial for gallantry in combat; Prisoner of War medial; and Purple Heart, for wounds suffered in combat during WWII and in Korea. He retired from the U.S. Army after serving 20 years. The Home has had many to serve in WWII, Korean War, Vietnam, Desert Storm, and Afghanistan. We honor and remember all those who bravely served by putting their lives on the line so we can enjoy our freedoms here in America.

Alumni Day 2016 – Celebrating and Remembering

Alumni Day 2016 was held at the Macon campus of The Methodist Home on Saturday, August 20. Alumni, along with family and friends, attended and reminisced on their time living here at The Home.

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They were able to spend time reconnecting with fellow alumni and looking back at photos from their past. They also enjoyed time playing Bingo and winning prizes.

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The alumni, family and friends were able to take a tour of the Macon campus, connect with staff members, enjoy a delicious lunch, and spend time in fellowship.

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Each alumni brought special family members and friends with them to enjoy the homecoming activities. These people are influential in the lives of the alumni, and enjoyed being able to see where they grew up.

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A special prize was given to one of the alumni, a handmade quilt.

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James Kent, our oldest veteran alumni, spent time telling stories of his time at The Methodist Home. He also told stories about his time as a prisoner of war. Mr. Kent has served in World War II, along with other conflicts.

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The day concluded with a Memorial Service in our chapel in the Rumford Center. The alumni remembered the lives of those lost in the past year.

After the memorial service, the alumni had an ice cream social with our residents. They spent time together and shared stories.

It was a great day of celebrating lives changed, remembering lives lost, and sharing wisdom.

St Marys Golf Tournament Huge Success

The Methodist Home Golf Classic in St Marys was held on Sunday, May 1st and was a huge success.  Thank you to all of our sponsors and participants for making this year’s event a hole in one!

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A special thanks to all of our sponsors, especially our presenting sponsors: Coastal Industry Company LLC, Express Scripts, and Southern Harvest Insurance.

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Presenting Sponsors

Coastal Industrial Company LLC

Express Scripts

Southern Harvest Insurance

Reception Sponsors

Lloyd Fry Foundation

Southeast Georgia Health System

Lunch Sponsor

Winn Dixie

Golfer Gift Sponsors

BLB Custom Hardscapes

Davis Love Foundation

MartiniTees

Mosquito Joe of Coastal Camden

Phil Shepardson

Cart Sponsors

Altman’s Restaurant

Crosby of Camden

Mitsubishi Turbines – Savannah Machinery Works

TDS Telecom

The Heritage Bank

Hole-in-One Sponsors

Albert’s Jewelers

Bennett Chevrolet-Buick, Inc.

TMH Foursomes

Alison Evans

Animal Medical Clinic

Fowler, Maxwell & Company, P.C.

Southeastern Bank Mortgage Lending

The Lemieux Group

Turner Brothers Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc.

Tee & Green Sponsors

Advance Rehabilitation & Consulting LTD

Alexandra & Peter Stetler

Ameris Bank

Ankle & Foot Associates, LLC

Bishop Landscaping Inc. – Landscape Innovations

Camden Dental Care

Camden Dental Care

Camden Oral Surgery, Dr. Diane Pennington DMD, M.D.

Camden Pharmacy

Carol Hamblet – It’s all about the Children

Caroline & Emma Cramer

Coastal Car Care

Coastal Dock Builders LLC.

Corinne Simmons

Cumberland Plumbing, Inc.

DeLoughy

Ellen and Joe Holler “Bless the Children Everywhere!”

Goldsworth Family

Hippo Storage

Kingsland Family Dental Associates

Lamb Insurance Services

Landscape Innovations

Lee and Cates Glass, Inc.

LightHorse

Mary T.Smith and Associates LLC

Masterbilt Golf Carts

McLeod Properties

Parker & Pennington Dentistry – Coastal Dental Care, P.C.

Sam Pickren Heating & Air Conditioning

 

Tee Sponsors

A-1 Carpet Care and Disaster Services

Allgood Pest Solutions

Ambrose, Dr. Michael

Applebee’s

Beth and Harry Tipper

Bio-Life MD

Camden Serenity Club

Coastal GA Pool SVC 882-6580

Dave Mumma

DiPreta Dermatology

Freedom Self Storage

In Memory of Jim Galligan

James & Martha McGhin

James Jewelers

Kevin Lang Insurance Agency

Kings Bay Mail and More

McVeigh Family

Mosquito Joe of Coastal Camden

S & S Pools

Scot and Vanessa Williams

St. Marys Realty Inc.

St.Marys Venture Partners L.P.

Stanley M. Prince, DMD, PC

Strain & Yackel PC

Suzanne Bertolini

The Kunda Family

Tom & Janet Ward

H. Gross Construction Company

Wildcat Electrical Contractors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brandon Approaches Life’s Challenges with No Hesitation

story piece Brandon 130Brandon came to live with us when he was 12 years old. He and his brother needed a safe place to live and the guiding support of The Methodist Home. Despite those difficult circumstances, he arrived with a smile on his face. Even at that young age, Brandon faced the challenges in his life with “no hesitation.”

Now, three years later, he is a bright, athletic and focused young man. He has dreams of studying marketing/management and has set his sights on becoming the CEO of a large company one day.

As you may have guessed, Brandon is wild about sports. He plays both offense (fullback) and defense (middle line backer) for the Camden County Wildcats. Football has taught him much over the years, like “how to use mind over matter” meaning when you are nervous before a play, take on a winning attitude and “just do it…go plug that hole and make the play.”

Aside from athletics, including a budding career in wrestling, Brandon is a solid A/B student. While living at The Methodist Home, he has realized there are many good folks here to help him become a responsible young man. He is proud of the fact that he has improved in keeping his room tidy and is a likable guy. Describing himself as a quiet person, he said, “It might be tough to start a conversation with me, but I am the kind of guy you like to be around. I am worth it.”

Brandon claims the key to his success is to “trust what you have been taught and go for it with no hesitation.” We believe him and know his positive “can do” attitude, his desire to succeed and his winning smile will help him along the way.

At The Methodist Home, we put every effort into enriching our resident’s lives spiritually, creatively, academically and physically, in order to allow them to reach their full potential.

Ty…A Young Woman with a Strong Backbone

Ty is one step closer to her goals!

Ty is one step closer to her goals!

Life has not always been easy for Ty.  She has experienced more trauma and pain in her 17 years than most folks see in a lifetime.  Each time, she has picked herself up, dusted herself off, straightened her back and walked on, determined to do better! “I don’t look back at my past…I move forward to my future.”

 

There was a period of time where she left the home, but she came to realize The Methodist Home offered her far more opportunity than the other alternatives available to her.  She chose to come back, finish her education and plans on succeeding in life.

 

“At The Methodist Home, I have gained a bunch of self confidence, found new opportunities and learned to be independent.  I take responsibility for myself, clean my room, do my chores, complete my homework and help out around the cottage.”  When asked what motivates her to do more than most teens in these areas, she proudly proclaims, “Because, one day, I will be a home owner!”

 

She also offered words of advice for other kids in foster care, directly and with passion, “Keep your head up, no matter what you have been through!  Don’t let others judge you by your past.  Be strong, be independent.  Re – create yourself and be better than you were before!”

 

Ty’s goals include graduating high school with honors, signing up with the Army Reserves, going to college so she can become a critical care or combat nurse.  She credits Miss Willie Ann (her advocate at the Methodist Home) as a major motivator in her life.  “If I drop off my efforts by 1%, Miss Willie Ann stays on me…she is like a mom and coaches me step by step, always telling me she believes in me.  Now I believe in myself!  I am so proud I have grown my own backbone!”

 

Thank you for helping girls like Ty!  Your support provides her with the best chance to succeed in life.

 

Christmas Memories

The Christmas season at The Methodist Home is a wonderful time. Kids are given gifts, volunteer, and really get to know the true meaning of Christmas. Here are a few of the kids’ favorite things at Christmas- in their own words.

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Charlette

“During Christmas we have a little thing called Birthday Party for Jesus and other Christmas events we attend. But my favorite by far is the candlelight service on Christmas Eve. It’s really fun… Dr. Jeff (Lawrence) reads the Christmas story and I usually sing O Holy Night. At the end, everybody lights a candle and sings Silent Night… I’m telling you. It’s a sight to see!”

 

 


 

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“Tommy”

“I liked all the presents and we got to go outside and ride our new bikes.  I liked the Woodmen of the World party because they had puppets and gave us cookies and ice cream.   And,  I liked the Birthday Party for Jesus because we did a skit and I got to be in it.”

 


 

Katelynn

Katelynn

One of my most favorite things about Christmas is the weather.  I also love all the Christmas lights and decorations.  I enjoy waking up with the anticipation of Christmas morning and having a great deal of happiness around me.  Another thing I love about Christmas is getting to write a Christmas list every year.  It always makes you feel like a little kid again.  No matter how old I get, Christmas spirit will never get old.”

 

 

 


 

Xavier

Xavier

“I really liked when we did our skit and we got to sing  “Happy Birthday to Jesus.  And, I liked when the church came to our cottage and they gave us cookies.  Plus, I really, really liked when we woke up real early and got to open our Christmas presents.”

 


 

Destiny

Destiny

“One thing I love about Christmas is God.  He has brought me through so much.  Another thing I love about Christmas is the love.  I enjoy being able to spend time with my brothers and family.  One of my most favorite things about Christmas morning is the laughing and happiness.  That is what Christmas is all about to me.”

 

 


 

Victoria

Victoria

“Christmas means time with family. It also means time with staff and friends.  It’s a time for prayer and the celebration of the birth of Jesus.”

 

 

 


 

Evelyn

Evelyn

Christmas means spending time with the cottage. It’s also a time to sing holiday songs. It means helping others and celebrating the birthday of Jesus.”

 

 

These memories are only possible with your support. Donate here to give Christmas memories this year.

Donor Spotlight: The Cannon Family

Editor’s note: This story first appeared in the Summer/ Fall 2014 Gateway. Please sit back and read about these generous donors.

Margie and Buck Cannon

Buck Cannon’s family left a legacy gift in memory of Mr. Cannon. Pictured are Margie and Buck Cannon.

Charles “Buck” Cannon passed away in June 2011. He was a dedicated Christian and active, lifetime member of Abbeville United Methodist Church. He was a farmer in Abbeville with a Mechanical Engineering degree from Georgia Tech. Mr. Cannon is described as an outgoing person, friendly, and one who enjoyed people. He was a generous man and wanted to help people. He valued hard work and education. Maybe that is why he gave bigheartedly every year to The Methodist Home’s Workday.

Mr. Cannon’s wife, Margie, and his children, James Oscar Cannon and Ellen Cannon Mizio, decided to honor his memory with a generous donation to The Methodist Home. Mrs. Cannon said, “He would want the money given to The Methodist Home.”

The gift will create a legacy of helping kids working hard to overcome their circumstances. It’s an amazing way to honor the memory of a loved one. If you would like to learn more about making a generous gift in memorial of a loved one, please contact Alison Evans at 478-751-2800.

Back to School and New Beginnings

Shamonte is a rising freshman in high school. He is full of excitement about the coming year. Shamonte’s true love of music has him in the marching band this year.

Shamonte is a  freshman in high school. He is full of excitement about the coming year. Shamonte’s true love of music has him in the marching band this year.

Shamonte is a quiet and polite young man. He doesn’t talk about before he came to The Methodist Home. He does talk about his time here. Entering high school this year, he is excited about the future and looks forward to meeting new people. Going to football games is something Shamonte can’t wait to do!

He is off to a good start—making Honor Roll in his eighth grade year. He was a straight A student for three semesters and received A’s and only one B in one semester. Shamonte studies and says he is a fast learner. Usually, if he’s given an example, he gets it.

A true love of music resides in Shamonte’s heart. He began playing the flute in seventh grade. In eighth grade, he tried the trumpet because it was needed in his middle school band. He now is in the advanced class for trumpet and the marching band at his new high school.

Band camp during the summer was a new experience for Shamonte. He had to learn how to walk and play his instrument! “I enjoy it although it got hot!” says Shamonte of the camp. When asked what he likes about the trumpet the most, Shamonte says, “the trumpet does the melody so you know the song.”

A grounded young man, his expectations for his freshman year are realistic. He wants to try new things and be more active at school. Along with band, he is also registered for chorus. Shamonte says his first priority is to keep his grades up. When asked about his plans beyond high school, he says he has always wanted to be a Technology Engineer, dealing with computers.

Can you encourage Shamonte and others to reach their education and career goals? Do you support his desire to keep music as an important part of his life? Will you help kids like him as they learn and grow? 

 

 

Ways You Can Help