Children’s Homes growth reflects needs
    November 1 2010 by J. Blake Ragsdale, BCH Communications

    Baptist Children’s Homes (BCH) began with a single campus in 1885. Since then, the children’s homes has not only evolved from its orphanage roots, but has multiplied its outreach across the state.

    “Throughout the decades, BCH has strived to always remain vibrant and vital,” said BCH President Michael C. Blackwell.

    “In the early 1900’s it became apparent that the needs of North Carolina children and families could not be adequately served through one location.”

    Under the watch of longtime BCH general manager Martin Luther Kesler, the children’s homes received a 1,200-acre farm and residential home located in Kinston. It became Kennedy Home, named after benefactors, William Lafayette and Emily Kennedy, and was BCH’s first expansion of its services.

    Today, BCH has expanded into 18 North Carolina communities stretching its residential network from the mountains to the coast.

    “We consider the entire state our mission field,” Blackwell explains. “North Carolina children and families face daunting daily challenges.

    “We not only have to be prepared to meet the variety of needs, but we have to be able to meet the needs where they are.”

    With the establishment of Britton Ministries, a new group home in Ahoskie for as many as nine boys and girls, BCH has a physical presence in all areas of the state.

    “The broadness of our outreach still comes as a surprise to many of our constituents,” Blackwell said. “Though we work hard to communicate the scope of the ministry, often our friends only identify with the BCH location in their area. People are amazed to learn just how much we offer.”

    BCH’s child care network includes four residential campuses, four group homes, two wilderness camps for at-risk boys and girls, a residential ranch, three five-star Weekday Education centers, and a home for single, teenage mother and their babies.

    The agency also operates nine group homes for developmentally disabled adults.

    In 2011-2012, BCH looks to add two additional group homes in Raleigh as a part of its Developmental Disabilities Ministry.

    Related stories
    BCH celebrates rich history — 125 years
    Guest column by Michael Blackwell: There’s still a place for children's homes: Don’t let anyone fool you
    11/1/2010 2:23:00 PM by J. Blake Ragsdale, BCH Communications | with 0 comments

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