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June 23, 2024

Where Every Family Matters

880+ Homeless Children in Rutherford County

As the temperatures drop, the need for help rises. You can do your part and get involved in helping provide necessities to the homeless children in Rutherford County.

There are about 882 homeless children in Rutherford County school system alone. The top story lately is about the discovery of two teens living alone outdoors in Rutherford County while still attending public school and how the ATLAS (Academic Time Leads to Achieving Students) program is helping them find the resources they need. It’s children like these two that need everyone’s help especially during the cold winter months. Along with the ATLAS program, there are other local non-profits all around the county putting forth an effort to help in a time of need. Each of the organizations help in some way with the efforts of assisting homeless children in the Rutherford County school system.

For instance, River of Life Gives, a non-profit organization designed to provide Rutherford County with community assistance, benevolence, emergency relief, recovery programs and a charitable food bank. They have several programs in place to help those in need year-round including the Backpack Program, which works with ATLAS of Rutherford County to provide more than 200 children and teens with weekend food; Holiday Outreach, where they give out dinners, toys, coats and gift baskets … just to name a few. But, they can’t do what they do without your help! Get involved by donating — their current needs are blankets, toys and coats.

River of Life Gives is also hosting a FREE Family Christmas Movie Night on Tuesday, Dec. 13 from 7 – 9 p.m. They are located at 596 Sam Ridley Pkwy. W., Smyrna. Call 615-459-2533 or visit

If you want to help directly with the ATLAS program or find another organization to get involved with, give Debbie Mankin a call at 615-893-5815, ext. 22242, or e-mail her at


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