At the Ella Marie Foundation, we are committed to positively impacting the lives of women and children across the world, but also in our own community. We recently learned of an organization just outside of Atlanta, Mountain Top Boys Home (MTBH), that is working hard to steer boys onto the right path and protect them from disadvantaged upbringings.
Through Robert Willsey, a friend of Ella Marie Foundation and former Board member of MTBH, we learned more about this special organization and what they hope to accomplish:
Q: Tell Us More about Mountain Top Boys Home and its goals.
A: There are unfortunately so many young boys in and outside of Atlanta that suffer from unstable homes and disadvantaged upbringings. When the Georgia Department of Family Services and the Department of Juvenile Justice must remove neglected or challenged children from their home environments, they often come to Mountain Top Boys Home.
Although we’re part of the Greater Atlanta community, we’re situated on 340 acres of woodland in the mountains. Through generous donations, we provide these boys with lodging, structure and opportunities to reach their potential.
Q: How did you become involved with Mountain Top Boys Home?
A: A friend got me involved about 10 years ago when they were building the newest of their two cottages. My wife and I own Shumate Heating & Air Conditioning, and they approached us about donating the air conditioning for the lodge. It was absolutely our pleasure to donate the AC, and from there we sought ways to get more involved. I served on the Board for several years, and was able to see construction of that lodge come to fruition. It’s truly a wonderful organization, working to help our youth.
Q: How does Mountain Top Boys Home help the young boys who are sent there?
A: They provide these young men with the structure and guidance they weren’t getting in their homes. Sometimes these young men come to stay, and sometimes it’s temporary while their parents work out whatever issues they’re facing.
All the boys go to a public school, and live in the cottages. MTBH has staff working full time to ensure the safety of the boys. Referrals are made to doctors and therapists who provide them with the care and therapy they might need.
From time to time, they will also get donations from local organizations that allow them to take the boys on outings. They actually recently went to a Georgia Tech football game, and are often able to visit other sporting events. As you might expect, these boys find sports to be an outlet for their energy, so they get opportunities to both pursue and view sports at MTBH and at school or in the community.
Q: What advice would you give someone who wants to get involved with a nonprofit organization but doesn’t know where to start?
A: My situation was a bit unique in that a friend approached me directly about a very specific donation, but helping MTBH doesn’t have to take something on that scale. The biggest way you can help support Mountain Top Boys Home and the boys they’re helping is through monetary donations of any amount. They are ALL greatly appreciated.
Q: How can we help?
A: Donations allow them to both provide necessary items and services for the boys, but also take them on outings in the community. Cash or check donations and gift cards are all graciously accepted. Donations can be made online at www.mountaintopboyshome.org, or you can mail a check to:
Mountain Top Boys Home
65 Mountain Top Way
Sugar Valley, GA 30746