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A Friend’s House kicks off fund-raising blitz

Charity benefits Southern Crescent ‘children in crisis’

Officials with A Friend’s House, an area non-profit organization, are attempting to garner support for children in crisis. They intend to do so, in part, by giving supporters of their cause a pre-Valentine’s Day night of dinner and dancing.

The “Day of Love” fund-raiser will be Feb. 11, said Nan Jenkins, the organization’s director of development. The McDonough-based group provides a refuge to local children who have been displaced under distressing circumstances.

“We don’t want to have to be here, but the realization is that there are children out there who are hurting and who are in crisis,” said Jenkins. “So, we are glad that we can be here for the children as a place of refuge while they have that need. But we can’t do it without the community’s support.”

A Friend’s House, which has served the Henry County community for the past 13 years, is calling on residents to help support the organization’s mission through donations and raising awareness of its needs.

The Day of Love event starts at 1 p.m., with its “All You Need is Love” race event –– a 5K run, one-mile run, and a Tot Trot. Then, at 6:30 p.m., patrons are asked to attend the “All You Need is Love” dinner and dancing in McDonough, which will feature The Sean Shuffler Band, a local house band.

Jenkins said the race is being sponsored by Gold’s Gym; NewSole; Active Home Solutions; Fred and Regina Auletta; Tom Bailey CPA; Robinson, Whaley, Hammonds and Allison; Henry Allergy and Asthma Specialists with Nathan Segall, MD; Gezzo’s Surf and Grille; State Farm with Randy McClellan; Bellamy Strickland; Henry County Kiwanis Club; and Georgia Power.

The dinner and dancing event is being sponsored by Fred and Regina Auletta, and Pilgreen’s at Lake Dow. Net proceeds will go to benefit A Friend’s House, said Jenkins.

Interested participants are asked to pre-register at www.getsetgrow.com. Pre-registration is $20 for the 5K run and $15 for the one-mile run. Race day registration is $25 for the 5K run, and $20 for the one-mile run. Children, aged six and under, may participate in the Tot Trot free of charge. It starts at 11:30 a.m., and will close at 12:45 p.m.

The race will commence at the Henry County Department of Family and Children’s Services, located at 125 Henry Parkway in McDonough.

Jenkins said the dinner will be a full buffet at Pilgreen’s at Lake Dow, located at 1720 Lake Dow Road in McDonough. Tickets for the dinner and dance are $75 each, and reservations are needed by Wednesday, Feb. 8. Call (678) 432-1630, or e-mail njenkins@afriendshouse.org.

A Friend’s House and its supporters expect to continue fund-raising efforts throughout the winter and spring. Jenkins pointed to Foundation Sports, located at 2497 Lovejoy Road in Lovejoy. The baseball training facility plans to host a baseball camp on Feb. 24-25, for area youths, ages 6-12.

She said campers will learn baseball fundamentals from two former professional baseball players, who live in the McDonough area — Eric Ordorica, formerly of the Florida Marlins organization, and David Elder, formerly of the Cleveland Indians organization. All proceeds from the camp will benefit A Friend’s House.

Also coming up for the organization, is its largest fund-raising effort, the 11th Annual “A Taste of Henry”’ on April 20. Jenkins said it will be held at the Jason T. Harper Event Center, located at 99 Lake Dow Road in McDonough.

To learn more about the fund-raisers, visit A Friend’s House online, at www.afriendshouse.org.