Gwinnett Gab 10/23/2008

Five charities net $62,500 in grants

LAWRENCEVILLE - Five charitable organizations serving Gwinnett County residents have been awarded $62,500 in Jackson EMC Foundation grants, funded by the electric cooperative's members through the Operation Round Up program.

Lawrenceville's Hope Clinic, a nonprofit internal medicine clinic founded in 2002 to provide primary health care to the county's uninsured working poor, has been awarded a $15,000 grant to help provide treatment for indigent chronic care cases.

Signs & Wonders Inc., a Lawrenceville nonprofit that provides assistance to the homeless and needy in Gwinnett County, has been awarded a $15,000 grant to help operate its shelters, which serve men trying to overcome alcohol and drug addictions and women who have children under 10 years of age and need help while seeking employment.

Rainbow Village, a Norcross nonprofit providing transitional housing for the homeless, has been awarded a $15,000 grant to hire an additional part-time case manager to serve additional families from a Rainbow Village housing expansion.

The Lilburn Cooperative Ministry will use a $10,000 grant to assist needy families who are behind in their rent or mortgage. The ministry provides up to $250 annually per family for rent or mortgage assistance.

Creative Enterprises, a Lawrenceville agency serving individuals with disabilities, has been awarded a $7,500 grant to help purchase a minivan that can transport small groups of clients to community activities.

Any individual or charitable organization in the 10 counties served by Jackson EMC - Banks, Barrow, Clarke, Franklin, Gwinnett, Hall, Jackson, Lumpkin, Madison and Oglethorpe - may apply for Foundation funding by completing a grant application, available online at www.jacksonemc.com/Guidelines-for-Funding.106.0.html or at Jackson EMC offices. Applicants need not be a member of Jackson EMC.

Realtors' council to host expo

DULUTH - The Gwinnett Women's Council of Realtors is hosting the sixth annual New Home and Trade Expo from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. today.

Real estate agents, prospective buyers or those interested in networking and learning the most current industry trends are invited to the free event at the Gwinnett Center.

Expo attendees can win one of many prizes offered by Council partners and exhibitors. Participants can also purchase a $10 raffle ticket to enter the grand prize drawing of a trip to New York City.

This year's event benefits Habitat for Humanity and H.E.R.O. for Children, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life for children infected with and affected by HIV/AIDS.

Volunteers search for Iraq veteran

MADISON - More than 200 State Defense Force volunteers spent two days last month helping the Morgan County Sheriff's Office and the county's fire and rescue service in their second search for Army veteran Jason Roark of Dallas, who disappeared Nov. 9, 2006, after leaving a Snellville hotel.

Volunteers from Lawrenceville included Sgt. Dana Carrier, a squad leader for Winder's 3rd Battalion, 1st Brigade; Sgt. Donald Sullivan, the operations noncommissioned officer for the Atlanta-based 1st Brigade; and Cpl. Jake Baker, an assistant squad leader for Winder's 3rd Battalion, 1st Brigade.

The county's first search, a month after Roark's car was found abandoned at a rest stop near Madison, ended without him being found.

The family asked Morgan County to involve the State Defense Force in the second search because of its expertise in search and rescue and because of the manpower the organization could provide. The Georgia State Defense Force is one of three components of the Georgia Department of Defense. It is an all volunteer, unpaid uniformed force whose makeup is about 40 percent prior military.

Gwinnett Gab appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post. To submit an item to Gwinnett Gab, e-mail gab@gwinnettdailypost.com.