Become A Guardian Angel!

March 1st, 2015

STEPHEN JUDD

Haven of Hope Girls’ Home is a part of Tupelo Children’s Mansion and is a 12-month behavior modification and support program for teenage girls between 13 and 16 years of age. The home is truly a “haven of hope,” providing a safe and structured environment where the girls receive direction and guidance from Godly residential mentors and qualified therapists.

Nearly 100 young ladies have gone through Haven of Hope since we started this program in October of 2004. For most of them, it was a life-changing experience. Over time, while in the program, most of the residents gained a sense of self worth, developed a relationship with God, and found meaning and purpose for their lives.

The program consists of a 3-tier system in which the girls accomplish specified behavioral and therapeutic goals.

Tier 1 – Stabilization
The first several months of treatment focus on “stabilization.” During this time the resident works on compliance, recognizing her need for help, and establishing a sense of self-worth.

Tier 2 – Recovery
After “stabilization” has been accomplished, the resident moves to the “recovery” tier, where the treatment focuses on developing, controlling, and improving behavior and appropriate emotional response skills.

Tier 3 – Restoration
“Restoration” is the focus of the last months of treatment. During this time, each girl works on acquiring, internalizing, and maintaining the self-discipline, self-esteem, and dignity that is required to make reunification successful.

The girls benefit from very structured environment with a great deal of hands on supervision, and this certainly includes the classroom. A certified instructor oversees the educational program. In most cases, the girls are behind academically when they arrive on our campus; however, we have had tremendous success in helping the girls to move forward with their schooling.

For questions about placement or more information about the program, you may contact Kathryn Slagle, Director of Residential Services: kathyrnslagle@mansionkids.org; 662-791-7762

You can make a difference in the life of teen-age girl in our Haven of Hope Girls’ Home by becoming a Guardian Angel.

For more information on how you can become a Guardian Angel, go to: https://mansionkids.org/give/guardian-angel , or contact our Annette Tomlinson, Director of Sponsor Relations: 662-791-7726 annettetomlinson@mansionkids.org

 

Fun in the Snow!

February 26th, 2015

1531901_10204128979848883_3172891108025459507_n BY STEPHEN JUDD

Tupelo experienced the biggest snow storm in many years on Wednesday. As much as nine inches accumulated in just a few hours. The road conditions were so bad that the mayor issued a curfew throughout the night. Our offices and school were dismissed early, primarily in order for the children to be able to fully enjoy this rare event in the deep south.

The Mansion Kids were amazed and enchanted with the snow. When they realized they didn’t have the right type of gloves, they improvised by putting many pairs of socks on their hands. Since they did not have sleds, they used cardboard boxes or anything that could be found, including laundry baskets.1043875_10203895007277977_3518343280664752737_n11006378_10203895024198400_629178394912397579_n

The girls brought in bowls of snow and made snow-cones. They also made snow cream, which is basically snow and sweetened condensed milk.

Some of them, not realizing how quickly snow melts and wanting a memento, tried to bring snow balls inside and display them on the shelves in their rooms. Needless to say, that didn’t work out well.

The cutest thing was when our four-year-old, Austin, kept yelling over and over, “It’s Christmas! It’s Christmas! When are we getting our presents?  It’s Christmas!”

The girls kept trying to explain to him that Christmas wasn’t possible, that it was just Valentine’s Day. But his response was to continue to declare in disbelief, “Merry Christmas. I love Christmas!”

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A Large Board Showing Broad Support!

February 23rd, 2015

BY STEPHEN JUDD

Board

Someone saw a post on Facebook of the photo taken of the Tupelo Children’s Mansion Board of Directors, during it’s annual meeting in Tupelo, and commented, “Wow, that’s a lot of board members!” Yes it is a large board, and it shows the broad support for the Mansion from all across North America.

The Mansion board is made up of the District Superintendents and Secretaries of 35 “Partnering Districts” of the UPCI, ten Directors At Large, 18 Honorary Directors, as well as the UPCI Ladies Ministries President and General Youth President.

Those serving on the Executive Board are: Kevin Cox IO8A0631(Chairman), Aubrey Jayroe (Vice-Chairman), Matthew Martin (Secretary), David Tipton, Jr., Ron Brown, Scott Graham, Dennis Davis and Mark Johnson. The Directors at Large include: Gary Keller, Robert Martin, Larry Sims, William Chapman, Robert Myre, Coy Hill, Cheryl Becton, Roy Barnhill, Cindy Hart and James Carney.

IO8A0679The annual gathering of board members and supporters during February 10-11 included the Annual Fellowship Banquet, campus tours, a ladies luncheon, and meetings of several committees and the board. All had a wonderful time.

For more information about Tupelo Children’s Mansion, please go to: www.mansionkids.org.

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In Search of a Forever Family

January 21st, 2015

It has been a joy to watch Devon mature and develop a strong sense of self-esteem since his placement at Tupelo Children’s Mansion in the summer of 2013. He is an energetic 11-year-old with a charming smile and engaging personality.IO8A6559

When Devon’s adoptive mother, the only mother he has ever known, became critically ill last year, she began making plans to secure Devon a safe and loving future. Knowing she would be unable to parent him into adulthood, she contacted TCM and asked them to help her find Devon a new home.

When Devon arrived at the Mansion, he was angry at everyone and everything. Over the last year he has come to understand the deep love that led his mother to let him go. His first few months at TCM were rocky and his attitude and school grades reflected the hurt he was experiencing; however, last semester he made honor roll. He is currently an active member of the children’s sign and vocal choir, and has recently become a Bible quizzer.

Devon is aware that he is available for adoption and open to becoming a part of a new family. If you should have any questions concerning adoption through TCM, please contact our residential department.

If you would like to make a difference in Devon’s life now, you can sponsor him by becoming a Mansion Kid Sponsor.

We are thankful for our Mansion Kid Sponsors, who are the lifeblood of Tupelo Children’s Mansion. Without our sponsors, we would not be able to care for the children that God has entrusted to us. Sponsorship dollars help provide for the children’s clothing, food, shelter, special educational needs, medical needs, parental support (through our loving houseparents) and personal care.

To become a sponsor of Devon, or any other child at the Mansion, please go to www.mansionkids.org and click on “Mansion Kid Sponsor.” You can also call or email Annette Tomlinson, Director of Sponsor Relations, at annettetomlinson@mansionkids.org / 662.791.7726.

 

It’s Not Too Late To Make A Year-End Gift To TCM!

December 30th, 2014

As I write this final blog of 2014, I want to begin by thanking our Mansion supporters for all that you do to help us respond to the urgent needs of children every day.

The destruction we see in these young lives is worse than any tornado, flood or fire that you see in the news. The devastation of abuse, abandonment and neglect may not always show outwardly. Rather, its’ an erosion of the spirit, a loss of hope and a fear that, “I will never be safe.”

Before I pass along a wonderful testimony from a former resident, let me share with you a sampling of favorable opinions about TCM from several noted leaders:

“The love and support that you show to children each day makes a tremendous difference to this state. Obviously, your care and the Christian environment you provide have a profound impact on the children you serve. However, you reach extends much further. Your mission and example touch the lives of people throughout the community, and I know the lives of those who support your efforts are changed for the better as a result of your service.”—Phil Bryant, Governor of Mississippi 

“I have known of TCM since 1994. Chick-fil-A has played a small part in their financial support. This is a worthy organization that has served children with integrity.”—The late S. Truett Cathy, Founder & Chairman, Chick-fil-A, Inc.

“TCM, what a wonderful place for our children when they have nowhere else to go. Through the years, the Mansion has provided a means of family living when there were no other options. They have never refused to take in those who cried for help…now we cannot refuse to help them when they need us the most.  As the auditor for TCM for a number of years, I can attest to the fact that they utilize every resource available and use ‘your’ money wisely. You can’t go wrong by investing your contribution with TCM, who in turn will invest it in our future…our children.”—Aubrey Jayroe—TCM Vice Chairman, Arkansas District Secretary UPCI.

“For over 60 years, TCM has made a positive difference in the lives of countless children who have known abuse and abandonment. I have a close personal relationship with TCM’s President, and I have always known the staff to exhibit the highest degree of professionalism. Your support of this outstanding organization is a worthwhile investment.”—Roger F. Wicker, U. S. Senator, Mississippi

“For many years I have watched as Tupelo Children’s Mansion has fulfilled its mission to many unfortunate children and young people. What a phenomenal place it has been for those who otherwise would have never experienced such love and hope. I am deeply impressed with what God is doing through this Ministry.—Ron Becton, Pastor of First Church, Nashville, Tennessee

I appreciate these wonderful expressions of support; however, the most significant endorsements come from those who have personally been impacted by this ministry.

Katie Albanito, a former TCM resident, recently shared her story with me:

“Fourteen years ago I arrived at Tupelo Children’s Mansion—a scared, hurt and broken 15-year-old. My childhood was marked by abandonment, rejection and self-loathing—leaving me confused, angry and unable to connect with my family. I am so thankful that the Mansion took me in when I found myself in such a desperate situation. I’m eternally grateful for the opportunity I had to live at the Mansion, where I learned that ‘with God all things are possible’ and that ‘He will never leave me nor forsake me.’ Because of God’s grace and mercy, I’m right where I need to be, serving in the Sunday School at my local church and teaching my own children about God’s love.”

As we close out 2014, may I appeal to you one more time to consider sending an end-of-the-year offering to help us continue reaching out to children like Katie?

I can assure you that your help at this time would be appreciated so very much.

Thank you for believing in this great cause. Please know that your support is making a difference in the lives of many precious children.

You can give online by clicking here… https://mansionkids.org/give/current-appeal/