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LAKE WACCAMAW, NC, (NEWS RELEASE) — Two nonprofitagencies – Boys and Girls Homes of North Carolina,Inc. (Lake Waccamaw-based) and Thompson Child & Family Focus (Charlotte-based)– have entered into a partnership that expands regional access to mental healthand child welfare community services aimed at improving the lives of vulnerablechildren and families. The agencies will jointly operate program offices in Fayettevilleand Durham, NC.

This collaboration increases the numbers of those served—more than 1,200substantiated reports of child abuse and neglect were documented in 2010 between the two cities, with some encompassing areas ranking among the highest inthe state. The partnership also unites the agencies’ respective strengths,extends their collective geographic footprint and creates significantcost-saving measures by combining administrative, staff, program developmentand office location expenses.

Initially, B&GH and Thompson plan to connect children and families to a stronger,broader and more effective network of foster care and therapeutic supportservice, offering: family and therapeutic foster care placements, foster familytraining, and the accompanying and critical mental health supports.

“Together, we will advance our mutual commitment to serve the ever-changing and morecomplex needs of today’s children—all of whom deserve to be safe and loved,”said Gary Faircloth, president and CEO of B&GH.

“Our two agencies have a combined 195-yearlegacy of building stability and leading children and families into brighterfutures,” said Ginny Amendum, president of Thompson Child & FamilyFocus. “It is a partnership that honorsboth of our missions and a shared strategic vision—to most effectively meet theneeds of our communities by welcoming new ideas and embracing best practices.”

As the partnership evolves, Fairclothand Amendum are optimistic about further collaboration within other programs,noting that this is an ongoing, deliberate and strategic process. “We continueto evaluate programs and identify exciting potential opportunities that strengthenthe scope of our programming and services,” said Faircloth.

Plans call for the agencies toco-locate merged services across the state of North Carolina this summer.

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