SHE GIVES BACK

A playground for all

Children’s Charities to build all-inclusive play park in Milton

Children’s Charities co-founders, Amanda White and Lauren Holmes.
Photo
By CANDY WAYLOCK
Posted

The Clarity Farm Showcase Home and Tour

Milton, GA April 19-23

This beautiful home is designed by architect Tim Bryan (Bryan Residential Planning), built by Jason Cole (Cole Constructions), and designed and decorated by Pacita Wilson (Pineapple Park). Guests have a unique opportunity to not only tour this 10,000-square-foot home, but also to purchase the showcase fixtures and accessories. Boutiques, local artist and vendors will also be making their wares available to the public. All proceeds raised at this event will fund the new all-inclusive play park in Milton.

Tickets are $25 in advance or $30 at the door. Visit https://childrenscharitiesga.org/projects/ for more information and to purchase tickets.

What began as a fundraising effort in 2012 to purchase a much-needed medical vehicle for an area hospital has evolved over the years into an organization focused on a variety of needs for area children.

This month, Milton-based Children’s Charities will host its largest capital drive campaign – the Clarity Farm Showcase Home and Tour – to fund a playground in Milton benefiting children of all abilities.

The goal is to raise $500,000 to build the all-inclusive play park, which will contain an ADA compatible clubhouse, a zip line, sensory center, music center, swings and much more.

Children’s Charities co-founders, Lauren Holmes and  Amanda White, say the playground reflects the vision of the organization, which is to fund the greatest needs for children in North Fulton and South Forsyth.

“The new park will be the first of its scale in North Fulton County by encompassing more than an acre of city property,” said Holmes, a Milton resident and Realtor/broker with Crye-Leike Realtors. “The park will provide a fun experience for children with all abilities and disabilities.”

While the exact location for the park has still not been determined, White said the charity is working closely with City of Milton officials in the planning and development process and expects to announce the location soon.

“This will be one of the most inclusive parks in the state,” said White, who lives in Milton and is the owner of Mountain Vista Rentals in Big Canoe. “Kids from all abilities and disabilities will be able to play together.”

White said taking the idea of a play park from concept to reality was made possible by Pacita Wilson of Pineapple Park, the designer and decorator for the Clarity Home Show. She approached Children’s Charities and said she would like the organization to be the beneficiaries of the tour.

“The possibility of raising $500,000 allowed us to dream bigger than we had in the past,” said White. “This is how the all-inclusive play park came about.”

White and Holmes first joined forces in 2012, working to raise funds to purchase an emergency transport unit stationed at the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta urgent care center in Forsyth County at the Collection.

White had a personal connection to the need for the vehicle. Ten years ago her daughter, Meghan, now 22, developed a staph infection in her blood stream requiring immediate medical attention.

At Northside Forsyth Hospital, the family waited several hours for an emergency transport vehicle —essentially a pediatric emergency room on wheels — to transport Meghan to Scottish Rite Hospital.

“While on the way to Scottish Rite, Meghan crashed and had to be revived,” said White, noting her daughter spent the next 11 days in intensive care. “The doctors and nurses were so positive and supportive that it moved me. It takes a very special person to see these children in pain and suffering each day and make them better.”

A few years later, after her younger daughter, Jordyn, spent time at Scottish Rite for a ruptured appendix, the idea for Children’s Charities took shape.

“At that point I knew I wanted to do something for the hospital and the kids in North Fulton and South Forsyth Counties,” said White.

Children’s Charities was granted non-profit status in 2014, with the mission that all money raised in the community stays in the community.

Since its founding, the organization has focused much of its efforts on funding programs which support children with unique needs, supporting everything from equipment to programs to services.

The long list of projects funded or donated through Children’s Charities over the past five years include vein viewers and cell phone charging stations to Children’s Healthcare urgent Care Centers, an equine summer camp for kids with autism, an eye tracking device that can detect signs of autism in infants and lunches for foster kids during mentoring sessions at Independence High School.

The organization remains grassroots with an all-volunteer staff of about 35 volunteers who donate their time and talent to Children’s Charities.

Looking forward, White said they are looking to expand their reach to Dawson, Cherokee and Pickens counties. ■

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