A leading North Carolina nonprofit provider of treatment, care and education for at-risk children and families opened a new facility in October, unveiling also a check from the Messer Construction Co. Foundation for $25,000 that has funded the development of a 5,000-square-foot playground, as well as furnishings for child therapy rooms. Thompson Child and Family Focus (TCFF) on Oct. 12 opened its $4.4 million Family Services Center in Grier Heights, a neighborhood in Charlotte that has struggled with violence.

“The work of Thompson Child and Family Services has strengthened the very fabric of the Charlotte community,” said Steve Keckeis, vice president of Messer Construction Co. and Thompson board member. “They are among the most respected non-profits in the state, and their work is of the utmost importance to the future of this community.

“We’re excited to contribute to their effort of establishing themselves in Grier Heights, where their leadership will be a tremendous asset.”

The agency is relocating (and expanding) all the programs previously housed in its Seventh Street campus to its new 16,697-square-foot facility on Wendover Road. The new facility will provide education, care and intensive support for some of the region’s most at-risk populations. Last year, from its Seventh Street campus, Thompson provided care and support to 1,000 children and families.

“Our relocation to Grier Heights is a strategic move,” said Mary Jo Powers, president/CEO of TCFF. “We intend to be a vital part of the community and provide critical services that help stabilize the lives of the people who call Grier Heights home, while continuing to serve struggling families from across Mecklenburg County.”

Among the programs and services offered by Thompson are foster care, outpatient therapy, intensive in-home services, school-based intervention therapy, parent education, family partners and family mentors. In addition to the playground, the Family Services Center includes libraries, planning rooms, multipurpose rooms, a kitchen and spacious waiting areas.

Thompson’s chief program officer of preventive services, Rosa Underwood, noted the importance of creating a proper environment at the new facility. “Court-ordered intervention and counseling happen at the center,” she said, “so providing a stress-free environment for therapy and recreation was important.”

Read more: (Charlotte Observer)http://bit.ly/197LSJa