By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Good News
0814GOOD NEWS social
Hall County 4-H club members and their families celebrated the start of a new 4-H year with an ice cream social held at the 4-H office. The event marked the kickoff and promotion of the 4-H annual chicken barbecue. For information about Hall County 4-H programs, please call 770-535-8291.

The Goddard School located at 5989 Spout Springs Road in Flowery Branch was host to A Children’s Expo.

The Flowery Branch school opened in March and is owned and operated by Gina Bean Diaz. The school accommodates 110 students ages six weeks to after school.

The mission of the Children’s Expo was to create awareness about the various services and products available to children in the community and to support Rahab’s Rope, My Sisters Place and Drop Dead Gorgeous, charity organizations who seek to stop exploitation of women and children.

"We were all delighted to showcase our community vendors and raise over $1,000 in support of such important charities while enjoying music, food, games and amazing raffle prizes, including one free year of tuition," Diaz said. "The teachers and children were anticipating a lot of fun and a great learning experience."


The Medical Center Auxiliary honored more than 100 teen volunteers at an appreciation dinner recently at the Gainesville Civic Center.

"The teen volunteer program is a ‘win-win’ for the teens and the Medical Center," said Nancy Colston, executive director of The Medical Center Foundation. "The program gives teens the opportunity to get a head start on exploring possible medical careers, and the services the teens provide are very helpful to the patients, visitors and staff."

Cathy Ostermann, a Teen Volunteer Committee member, presented a $500 Teen Scholarship Award to Sabrina Singh, who has volunteered almost 250 hours over four summers to the Medical Center.

Lisa Geyer, a Teen Volunteer Committee member, presented The Andrew J. Dockery Teen Volunteer of the Year Award to Dustin Mauldin who has volunteered more than 600 hours since 2008. He is a graduate of Jackson County Comprehensive High School and will attend Gwinnett State College, then plans to transfer to a larger university to pursue a medical degree. He also received a $500 scholarship from The Medical Center Auxiliary.

The Medical Center Auxiliary sponsors a creative writing contest for the volunteers each summer. The teens are encouraged to write a short essay about what their volunteering experience has meant to them. This year’s winner was Vidya Medepalli, with Singh earning second place.

"The theme for our teen volunteer program is ‘Where Excellence Begins,’ and our teens truly demonstrated excellence this summer giving more than 3000 hours of service at NGMC," said Lynne Allen, director of Volunteer Services at Northeast Georgia Medical Center. "The assistance our teens provided this summer has made a tremendous difference; they have not only worked hard but also they have brightened lives and lifted souls."

Fifty-four volunteers received awards for completing 50 or more hours of service, including Dustin Mauldin and Hannah Shilling, who gave 600 hours; Kayla Goodson and Yeni Taborda, 500 hours; and Zach Grady, 300 hours.


Ruth Purcell

The six-day course was held on the campus of the Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky. Purcell was one of 79 choral musicians throughout the U.S .and Canada accepted to participate in the Institutes third summer session.

The Institute is a three-summer certification program for directors of young singers in a Christian church, school or community choir setting, with a rigorous curriculum of classes, workshops and master classes

"This year’s Institute was even more inspiring for me than the first. How wonderful to realize there are so many musicians dedicated to bringing the experience of choral singing to children, and to know that each of us is nurtured in our dedication by a common belief and purpose," said Purcell.