According to a press release sent out Wednesday, the Children’s Home Board of Trustees has approved its affiliation with The Crossnore School, a residential foster care home for children in crisis located in Crossnore, NC. The affiliation intends to create an organization that will provide highly effective trauma-informed care within a wide range of services available at both locations. Most importantly, the affiliation combines the efforts of both organizations to create a sanctuary of hope and healing for children in western North Carolina who are suffering from the effects of trauma caused by abuse and neglect.
“Our board and staff undertook a lengthy and deliberate process to determine how The Children’s Home can continue to provide the best care for the thousands of abused and neglected children in our region. The Crossnore School has long been recognized for its innovation and leadership in providing hope and healing for children. We believe this is an opportunity for The Children’s Home to realize its full potential and re-focus our programming on the changing needs of children and families.” – Katheryn Northington, Board Chair for The Children’s Home.
Brett A. Loftis, JD, Chief Executive Officer of The Crossnore School, will assume executive leadership of the combined efforts of The Crossnore School and The Children’s Home, including administrative, operational, and programming functions. Integration of services across both campuses will take place in the coming months while the governing Boards of both organizations work together to determine the appropriate governance structure for combined services to support healing children. Together, The Crossnore School and The Children’s Home leadership teams will evaluate opportunities relating to programs, facilities, land, and staffing at The Children’s Home. This is not a merger. This is a parent subsidiary model. The Crossnore School is becoming the parent organization and The Children’s Home is the subsidiary. Both governing boards are engaged and active in all decision making.
This affiliation will bring the highly successful and internationally recognized Sanctuary Model® of care to the Winston-Salem campus. The Sanctuary Model® helps organizations succeed in focusing on the treatment of children affected by the trauma of neglect and abuse. The Model is also transformational for staff serving the children and creates a cultural change in the environment where treatment takes place. The Crossnore School obtained Sanctuary certification in 2011 and was re-certified in 2014.
“Today in North Carolina there are more than 10,000 children in foster care. Our current residential capacity at The Crossnore School is 83, and will rise to more than 100 with the opening of three new cottages this spring. That number is certainly meaningful in the lives of the children we serve, but is not enough in the scope of all the children who need help,” says Brett Loftis, CEO of The Crossnore School. “The goal of our strategic planning process has always been to serve more children. This affiliation with The Children’s Home will expand our capability to provide more services for more children. Our ultimate goal is to become the premier provider of children’s services in western North Carolina.”
For more than a century, both organizations have worked to transform the lives of thousands of children through therapeutic treatment programs provided in group home, single-family foster care, and educational settings. Combining efforts across two campuses provides a greater continuum of care for children in need. The Farm will continue to operate, and will be utilized as a vocational classroom for children, where they will learn about food, farming, and running a business, as well as earning their own money from part-time employment. The Crossnore School has four businesses on their campus that operate in the same manner (Miracle Grounds Coffee Shop & Café, Blair Fraley Sales Store, Crossnore Weavers and Crossnore Fine Arts Gallery).
What will happened to the unused land on the Children’s Home property? According to the Children’s Home Board of Trustees the Children’s Home 212-acre campus has served children well for over 100 years. Recognizing the value of this land, the leadership teams of The Children’s Home and The Crossnore School will be exploring ways to utilize the land to best serve children.
“The Crossnore School Board of Trustees is thrilled with the results of our strategic planning process. We are excited that The Children’s Home is uniting with us to increase our capacity to serve more children in crisis from North Carolina,” says John Blackburn, board chair of The Crossnore School. “The Children’s Home is placing their trust in us, and we are grateful for this opportunity to work together.”