Potter Children's Home celebrates groundbreaking of new apartments for single-parent families

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- Thursday, Bowling Green celebrated a groundbreaking, not of a new business, but an expansion for a local ministry that serves children.

Historically, the Potter Children's Home & Family Ministries cared for orphans and foster care children. Today, they continue that mission of caring for foster kids, in addition to serving single-parent families.

"There's a lot of families having difficulty -- still a number of children that don't have parents -- and so we want to serve ultimately children, but part of serving children is serving the families as well," explained Ralph Brewer, the executive director.

The campus has accomodations for 17 single parent families.

Elizabette Raby, who lives in one of these apartments with her children, said when she became a single mom, she found herself and her family in a difficult place, where having somewhere to live along with food on the table was uncertain.

"They gave me a place to live; they've allowed me to pay off debt -- really just build on my future," Raby explained.

She said she'll soon start to continue her education in the fall.

"Just being able to take things that were not really a reality for me -- more of a dream that I really didn't ever think I was going to be able to do -- and make them a reality and make those kind of things happen. So it's been a huge blessing."

"For our single-parent families, we provide them an apartment, utilities, food from our pantry; we provide counseling for them and for their children," said Brewer.

This new groundbreaking, hosted by the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce, is ushering in a second quad-plex, creating new living spaces for single-parent families and a mentor couple.

Brewer says because the population they serve has grown, they need more support for staffing. This new quad-plex will be available rather for families and children who are moved out of a dormitory located on the campus. That will allow some of the dorm to be converted into office spaces.

Brewer said the new quadplex is being funded in large part by a will.

"There's so many people that support this ministry that we don't even know, that we don't even -- I'll never meet this side of heaven," Raby said. "But they've made such a difference for me and my kids and I mean, I can't ever thank anybody enough."

Brewer said it was humbling seeing the outpouring of community support demonstrated that day. Kentucky legislators and Mayor Bruce Wilkerson were among those in attendance.

"We know we're serving a lot of children, we think that's important, and it's obvious from the support we get that the Bowling Green/Warren County community agrees with that and likes what we're doing," said Brewer.

They hope to begin building next month, where the project is expected to take 3 to 4 months.

"We have plans to build many more of these quadplexes in the future," said Brewer.