Gwinnett charities receive nearly $61,000

LAWRENCEVILLE - Six charitable organizations serving Gwinnett County have received a total of $60,931 in grants from the Jackson EMC Foundation, funded by cooperative members participating in the Operation Round Up program.

NSPIRE Atlanta, an outreach effort of St. David's Community Church in Suwanee, has received $15,000 to provide homeless clients with continuing education.

Gwinnett Children's Shelter in Lawrenceville has received $15,000 to provide a family therapist and course materials for weekly parenting classes designed to decrease family violence.

Gwinnett Community Clinic, a Snellville volunteer-based nonprofit clinic that serves those who have been denied insurance coverage due to pre-existing conditions and those for whom insurance is a financial impossibility, has received $5,431 to update the clinic's telephone system.

Bridge the Gap Ministries in Snellville has received $5,000 for its "Helping Hands for Hurting Hearts" program, which helps just-released inmates.

Annandale Village has received $15,000 to replace worn-out washers and dryers with new energy efficient heavy duty models. Learning how to take care of laundry is part of the Villagers' life skills training and enhances their quality of life.

Boy Scouts Northeast Georgia Council has received $5,500 to help purchase handbooks, uniforms, camp fees and registration fees for families unable to pay for them.

Parents invited to safety forum

DULUTH - Ed Smart, father of abduction survivor Elizabeth Smart and a nationally recognized child protection advocate, and Erin Runnion, surviving parent of abducted and murdered child Samantha Runnion, will conduct a free forum for parents Wednesday at the Gwinnett Convention Center.

Smart and Runnion will discuss "It Takes a Community," a revolutionary children's safety partnership comprised of national leading children's safety initiatives unified to protect our children and families. Steve Daley, founder and executive director of radKIDS Inc. and a leading national children's safety expert, will lead the instruction.

The event is sponsored by Keep Georgia Safe, a nonprofit organization that provides safety and crime prevention training and operates the only wireless network that sends all three Georgia emergency alerts for missing or dangerous persons.

The event, which begins at 7 p.m., is for anyone interested in learning more about safety education and violence prevention for children from three of the nation's leading experts.

For more information, go to www.keepgeorgiasafe.org.

Library to mark book celebration

LAWRENCEVILLE - Gwinnett County Public Library has partnered with Rotary International to celebrate International Children's Book Day on Thursday.

Rotarians from the Rotary Clubs of Lawrenceville and Gwinnett Sunrise have volunteered to read books to children at the Grayson, Lawrenceville and Mountain Park branches at 10:30 a.m. Thursday.

Rotarians will read from books of their native countries, which include Africa, Sweden, Ireland, Germany and more.

For more information, please visit www.gwinnettpl.org.

Students invited to become All-Star Achievers

ATLANTA - The Atlanta Braves and Chick-fil-A have teamed up to reward students for academic excellence with the All-Star Student Achievers Program.

Students in kindergarten through 12th grade who achieve straight A's, honor roll or perfect attendance will receive two complimentary tickets to a 2009 Braves regular season home game and a Chick-fil-A coupon. Students can become All-Star Student Achievers if they met one of the criteria for the 2008 fall semester.

Every student participating in the program will be entered into a random drawing for the opportunity to be one of four students selected to attend a Braves batting practice and participate in a special pre-game presentation. Additionally, the metro Atlanta school with the most participation in the All-Star Student Achievers program will receive a special visit from Chick-fil-A and an Atlanta Braves player.

All-Star Student Achiever ticket forms will be distributed by schools to qualifying students. Completed ticket forms, signed by the school principal, must be returned to the Braves ticket office at P.O. Box 4064, Atlanta, GA 30302 by June 30.

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.