Elks Aidmore recently finalized its contract with the state to provide therapeutic foster care in the Conyers, Covington, Athens area with an expansion into Valdosta in late spring.
Elks Aidmore, a non-profit facility based in Conyers that provides services to at risk youth and foster children, finalized its contract with the Georgia Department of Human Services. The agency will begin recruiting and training families to provide therapeutic foster care.
“This is an exciting time for Elks Aidmore and we are grateful that the Georgia Department of Human Services has allowed us to expand our services to fill an unmet need. Since 2007, half of Georgia’s providers have closed their doors and we are fully committed to providing services and filling some of the voids created by the closures,” said Elks Aidmore’s CEO Abe Wilkinson.
Three years ago, Elks Aidmore began researching foster care needs in Georgia and made a decision to expand services beyond residential care for at-risk girls. According to a released statement, the decision was made to meet the need generated by the country’s economic recession and the growing population of youth and families that need specialized services.
Elks Aidmore's reorganization and expansion initiative included creating a transitional plan, hiring staff, and completing state applications to expand in target service areas. Elks Aidmore currently provides Independent and Transitional Living programs, operates boys and girls cottages in the residential program, and has initiated Community-Based Alternatives for Youth (CBAY) and Therapeutic Family Foster Care services.
“We are celebrating our programmatic successes, but fundraising remains a challenge. Each year we are tasked with raising funds to support extra programmatic services and 50 percent of our operating expenses. We are deeply appreciative of the support of the Georgia Elks and the local community. We look forward to working closer with local businesses and Conyers-based national corporations, in exploring philanthropic and volunteer partnerships,” said Dawn Butler, Director of Development.
Elks Aidmore has provided services to Georgia’s at-risk youth, like foster children, for over 75 years. Starting in the 1930’s, the agency provided services through our clinics to youth who suffered from physical disabilities, which lead to the opertaion of the Elks Aidmore Hospital in Atlanta from 1976.