Nancy M. Young: Feb. 17, 2018

Published 12:22 pm Monday, February 19, 2018

Schley County Family Connection update
The Schley County Family Connection offers an update on its activities.
• The playground equipment for the new Ellaville-Schley County Community Playground has arrived. A construction company is currently landscaping and leveling the site of the new Ellaville-Schley County Recreation Complex. Ground-breaking will be this month with the installation in early March.
The Schley County Community Foundation has worked diligently over the past five years to make this new playground a reality. The project included nearly $45,000 in local donations and grants from Flint Energies Foundation and KaBoom.
• Schley County Family Connection is working with The Church International, Second Food Harvest, City of Ellaville and the Schley County Board of Commissioners to move the USDA and
GNAP food distribution programs to the Ellaville-Schley County Recreational Complex.
Currently approximately 200 low-income families receive USDA food and 100 children under age 18 receive free food through GNAP each month. The program was moved to the recreation complex to ease traffic flow.
• The Family Connection is applying for a $5,000 grant to purchase a new four-station food warmer and exercise equipment for the Ellaville Senior Citizen Center.
• The Family Connection provided free, mid-year school supplies for students at Schley County Elementary School and special needs students at Schley County High School.
• The Family Connection continues to seek additional grants for Deep South Canine Rescue, a no-kill animal shelter in Schley County.
• John Greene, Family Connection coordinator, will attend the FY2019 planning meeting with Macon and Webster county  Family Connections.
• The Child passenger Safety Program has awarded nearly 1,000 free car seats in Schley County and approximately 300 car seats in Taylor County to Medicaid-eligible children.
• In the past month, two accidents with Teddy Bear Sticker car seats were reported: one in Reynolds slightly injured the child and a Schley County child in an accident near Fayetteville. The children received new car seats.
• Schley County Family Connection is applying for a $5,000 grant for the Taylor County Public Health Department to pro-mote prevention activities at Taylor County High School and to fund health fairs throughout the county.

Sumter EMC appoints Eddie Watson as Schley County director
The Sumter EMC board of directors appointed Eddie R. Watson to fill the Schley County director’s seat left vacant by the death of Charles E. Hart. Watson’s appointment was effective Jan. 1. He will serve the remainder of the three-year term.
Watson was born in Laurens County, and grew up in Eastman, before moving to Sumter County as a teenager. He has worked and made his home in Schley County for the past 33 years.
Following his graduation from Southland Academy, he earned a degree in industrial controls from Ben Hill-Irwin Technical College before earning a mortuary science degree from Gupton Jones Mortuary College.
He is currently owner of two funeral homes: Watson-Giddens in Ellaville and Watson-Tante in Buena Vista, as well as Watson’s Vault Co. He also owns Watson Farm where he raises Boer goats for show and sale.
Watson is the deputy coroner for Schley County. He serves on the Ellaville-Schley County Housing Authority and the Schley County Zoning Board. He is a member of the Ellaville Lions Club and the Americus Campus Gideons. He is a former member of the Schley County Board of Education, the Ellaville- Schley County Chamber of Commerce board and Downtown Development Authority. He is also member of the Ellaville-Schley County Historical Society. He is a retired volunteer firefighter and EMT.
Watson has been married to the former Sharon Grimsley for 36 years. They have two children, three grandchildren and another due in March. The family attends Ellaville Baptist Church where Watson is a deacon and chairs the budget committee. He is also vice president of the Alaska Tundra Mission Organization which sponsors mission trips to Alaska.
When he was notified of his SEMC board appointment, Watson said, “I am extremely honored to have been chosen to follow Mr. Charles Hart as the Schley County representative on the Sumter EMC board of directors. My sincere hope is to continue Mr. Hart’s strong legacy of service to the members of Schley County.”
“We are pleased to welcome Mr. Watson to the Sumter EMC board. We look forward to working with him and sincerely appreciate his willingness to serve our members in Schley County,” said Ted McMillan, president and CEO of Sumter EMC.

Schley County Family Connection to meet
The Schley County Family Connection meets at noon Feb. 22 at the Thomas Edwin Wall Post 191 American Legion. RSVP John Greene at 229-591-2323 if you plan to attend.

Newman’s Own Foundation makes award to Schley County School System
John Greene announced that the Newman’s Own Foundation has awarded the Schley County School System with free books about nutrition and healthy eating through a grant awarded to First Books for Counties in the Georgia Family Connection Region 8 area.
Schley County Schools will receive $958.33 in free books that will be distributed to all classrooms throughout the school system.
Currently Schley County Family Connection has obtained grants for two nutrition-based programs in school systemd including Children Cafe for special needs students and the Summer Cafe that feeds students at the Schley County High School during June and July.
Another large grant from First Books will be awarded later this year.