The buzz of sanders could be heard well outside the wood shop at Thomas Academy one Monday afternoon as the students worked on multiple bedframes.
“When we brought Travis Greene in as our vocational instructor to start the spring semester we hoped to be able to find projects that would make an impact,” said Chief Academic Officer and Principal George Ward. “Almost immediately we were presented with an opportunity to make an impact on the Boys & Girls Homes campus.”
That first project was to refurbish the furniture for Civitan Cottage as it is converted to serve the Bright Hope program on campus.
“Bright Hope will serve children ages 6 to 10 whose parents are receiving treatment through the Christian Recovery Centers,” said B&GH President/CEO Ricky Creech. “The program will help take the worry off mom and dad so they can focus on their recovery knowing their child is being cared for.”
Having child care is a big hurdle for adults with substance use disorder according to Christian Recovery Centers CEO Josh Torbich.
“What keeps parents from getting into recovery is not having someone to take care of their kids,” Torbich said. “If they know that they have an option to go into a residential program that takes care of their children they may be more willing to go into the voluntary placement. It will keep the children out of the DSS system.”
Under Greene’s supervision, the youth in the wood shop class are repairing, sanding and repainting the furniture to help brighten the living space for the children who come into the program.
“We have been working on the furniture as a class four days a week with youth from Lions cottage coming in on the fifth day to continue the process,” said Greene. “Starting with a project like this where there is an obvious impact close to home helps to keep the motivation up and demonstrate to the youth that the skills taught in this course can be applied immediately.”
The skills demonstrated throughout this first project have already resulted in additional requests from the campus.
“We have been asked to work on the furniture in the Solomon Building next,” said Greene. “It is very encouraging to have our students gaining recognition for their work so quickly.”
Thomas Academy is now accepting applications for Fall 2021. Applications are available on the website – www.thomasacademync.org.
About Bright Hope
Bright Hope is a partnership between Christian Recovery Centers and Boys and Girls Homes to provide a pilot program of family substance treatment. The residential family-based treatment center is open to all residents of North Carolina. It will provide therapy, family support, and advocacy service for children whose parents received Substance Used Disorder (SUD) Treatment. During the 16 to 24 week program, the Civitan Cottage on the B&GH Lake Waccamaw campus will provide a home and family therapy for children whose parents are in recovery at Christian Recovery Centers. The program is provided at no charge to the families.
Bright Hope is supported by grant project number PROJ013954, awarded by the Office for Victims of Crime, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this program are those of the contributors and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice.
About Thomas Academy
Thomas Academy is a North Carolina Public Charter School that educates middle and high school students. Located in Lake Waccamaw, the academy provides a tailored academic experience to students who are oftentimes in need of a more specialized, integrated curriculum. Thomas Academy was founded on personalization in education, unique offerings and educating through purposeful design. Enrollment is open to any student in grades six through 12