The quiet ridge at River Hill Angus Farm overlooking the picturesque countryside will soon be bustling with the sounds of construction machinery. And in the near future, it will come alive with children’s laughter.
The building of three new Family Foster Homes for children will soon commence now that North Carolina Baptists and faithful
friends of Baptist Children’s Homes of North Carolina (BCH) have met the $4.3 million fundraising goal for River Hill Refuge.
“It’s to God’s glory that we have been blessed with friends who are just as passionate as we are to see vulnerable children in our state have these compassionate homes,” BCH president/CEO Michael C. Blackwell shared.
Brothers Jay and Wes Westmoreland donated acreage from their family’s River Hill Angus Farm in Shelby, the inspiration for the project’s name. They also gave a lead gift to build the first home which will be named in honor of their late father, Dr. Ted G. Westmoreland.
The lead gift for the second home was made by Whittier residents Tom and Marcia Huskey in honor of Marcia’s late sister Star. Marcia
served as her sister’s guardian as Star struggled with chronic mental illness. When she passed, the Huskeys were the recipients of her assets. After praying about it, the couple decided to give funds from the sale of property Star owned to build the second home at River Hill Refuge. The home will be named “Starlite House” in her memory.
“The reason was to honor Star but also because at the end of the tunnel we hope every child sees the light for a good life,” Marcia
The lead gift for the final home was made by “The Tucker Heart, Soul, Mind, and Strength Foundation,” a foundation established by
longtime BCH friends and Shoe Show, Inc. founders Bob and Carolyn Tucker of Concord. They also funded BCH’s The Bob &
Carolyn Tucker Greater Vision Ministry.
“‘The Tucker Heart, Soul, Mind, and Strength Foundation’ is pleased to partner with the Westmoreland family and BCH to provide a Godly, loving and peaceful atmosphere for at-risk children,” Carolyn said. “This gift acknowledges the success and faithfulness of those who labor to change the lives of children and point them to Jesus.”
First Baptist Charlotte, one of BCH’s long-standing church partners and home church of Jay Westmoreland, went well beyond their goal. Pastor Robert Welch and church leaders set a goal to raise $150,000 towards River Hill Refuge, with part of the funds also going to the forthcoming Emmanuel Home for birth mothers.
“God has done an Ephesians 3:20 moment right before us and in
a matter of only four weeks we have already received over $220,000 in offerings!” Welch said. “It’s our prayer that River Hill Refuge and Emmanuel Home will shine hope, give help, provide a haven for healing, and allow room for the redeeming work of the Savior
in the lives of children and birth moms. “
Written by Blake Ragsdale, Director of Communications