Nearly 175 volunteers from the Lake Norman District of the United Methodist Church have finished a three-bedroom group home on Mount Zion Church Road where three adults with developmental disabilities will live more independently than before.
Unlike a traditional group home requiring live-in staff and regular supervision, the home on Mount Zion Church Road will need far less "hands-on support" for its residents, said Steve Sellers, president of the United Methodist Church-affliated organization UMAR.. Residents will learn life skills such as planning a home budget, shopping for groceries, cooking healthy meals and maintaining the lawn, he said.
Founded in 1983 by the United Methodist Church, UMAR is a nonprofit that assists adults in western North Carolina who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. UMAR supports about 325 adults through group housing, jobs and cultural enrichment programs, including Joey Beatty, 28, who will move into the new home in May.
"Each and every person at UMAR is unique in their own way," said Beatty, who assisted with painting and woodwork. "UMAR has always been a home away from home."
Construction started in September. Volunteers partnered with Wesley Community Development Corp., a nonprofit community housing group that builds affordable homes for low-income residents. Mount Zion United Methodist Church donated land for the home to UMAR, said Wesley President Roy Helm/.
Mount Zion raised about $50,000 toward the $175,000 project. Fifteen churches in the Lake Norman United Methodist Church District raised $65,000; the Duke Endowment also contributed.
"It is our hope and dream that residents of the home will enjoy a more independent lifestyle and become integral and active members of the local community," Helms said.
Mooresville shelves park funding request
MOORESVILLE The Mooresville Board of Commissioners has shelved a request to pay for a road and parking spaces at a proposed community park in Lakeside Business Park at Interstate 77 Exit 36.
The local Horatio Ebert Foundation has property at the end of Meadow Hill Circle, next to the Sleep Inn hotel inside the business park. The foundation wants to build a park on half the property.
The Lakeside Park Property Owners Association would own, operate and maintain the park, said Erskine Smith, interim town manager.
The foundation wants to donate the other half of the property to the town but wants the town to invest in the park by building a drive and 10 parking spaces, Smith said. The proposed road and parking lot would cost about $98,000, he said.
The foundation is awaiting word from the nearby Chick-fil-A on whether the restaurant chain will contribute financially to the park, thus reducing the town's financial share.
Commissioner Chris Carney said he didn't support spending town money on the project. At last week's commissioners meeting, Carney recommended the board shelve the proposal, which it did by a 6-0 vote.
Work complete on "teaching house"
KANNAPOLIS A "teaching house" for families needing extra support has been completed in the city's Carver neighborhood.
Such transitional homes help families move from emergency shelters to more permanent housing. Families receive financial counseling and other services from the Cooperative Christian Ministry and from Community Link to help them live independently. Families typically stay six months to two years.
The city of Kannapolis partnered on the home with the Cooperative Christian Ministry and Habitat for Humanity Cabarrus County. CCM runs the transitional housing program, and Habitat Cabarrus will repair and renovate homes purchased by the city with federal funds to be converted into "teaching homes." Habitat volunteers also donate materials.
The house in the Carver neighborhood is among several teaching homes planned for development in Kannapolis.
Herbert moves to Concord
CONCORD Beginning Monday, Doug Herbert Performance will be in a new location next to Charlotte Motor Speedway.
The high-performance warehouse, which had been in Lincolnton since 1991, is now in the heart of racing, owner Doug Herbert said. The new address is 4030 Concord Parkway S.
"We were looking at ways to be more efficient, streamlined and customer-focused, and I'm certain that the move will deliver on those objectives," Herbert said.
The first event at the new location will be the 20th annual Doug Herbert Performance Open House and Super Sale on May 7. Details: www.dougherbert.com.