The Tree House advocating for children, families


The Tree House, the children’s advocacy center serving Barrow, Jackson and Banks counties, has relocated to its new home at 173 Highland Drive in Winder.

Thanks to the Luther and Susie Harrison Foundation which funded renovation of the former youth shelter, The Tree House is debt-free.

“We are so thankful to this foundation, established by the late R. Harold Harrison to honor his parents, for supporting us once again in fulfilling out mission,” said director Becky Lee. “Not having a mortgage will allow us to focus a greater portion of each dollar given by our supporters for helping children and families.”

The Tree House exists to reduce the impact and occurrence of child abuse through counseling, educating, supporting and nurturing struggling families.

According to Lee, The Tree House provided 6,378 services this year including serving 329 children. A total of 320 forensic interviews were conducted and crisis counseling services were provided to those children. Family support services and supervised visitations were also included in the work of The Tree House.

The Tree House is a United Way agency and, during 2011, Jackson County had 337 individuals served by The Tree House and 457 Barrow Countians were served.

Because of much of a day in the life of a worker at The Tree House is spent dealing with the ugliest side of society, Lee said supporters mean so much since they “remind us of the goodness in people and that there’s always hope.”

Lee credits general contractor Bill Brantley of South Fork Homes and his crew for renovating the structure “into a beautiful, functional facility for children to come and begin the healing process.”

The community has assisted in adopting rooms that needed to be filled with furniture and other items to make families feel at home. A plaque will be place outside each room acknowledging those who adopted the room.

“We still have a few items on our wish list,” said Lee. Needed are items for two plat therapy rooms, window blinds, a conference room table and 20 chairs, eight 6-foot tables, 40 padded folding chairs and a 26-inch two-drawer black filing cabinet.

Monetary donations can help The Tree House better serve children and families.

A gift of $10, for example, will pay for play therapy supplies for a child while a $50 donation will finance a therapy session for a victim of child abuse. A $100 donation will fund five home visits with hands-on parent education and $400 pays for a forensic evaluation.

Donations can be directed to The Tree House, P.O. Box 949, Winder, GA 30680.

For more information about how you can support The Tree House, visit or call 770-868-1900.