Poker run to benefit Milling Manor

Published 8:41 am Thursday, June 2, 2016

Milling Manor Inc. is more than a group home.

Much more.

And the local institution is good at what it does: serving intellectually-challenged area residents to help them become more of a part of the community. It regularly scores highest marks from accrediting agencies.

On Saturday, June 4 at Beach N Tans on Salisbury Road in Mocksville, the sixth annual poker run will be held to benefit Milling Manor (MMI). With a $300 prize for the best hand, kick stands go up at 10:30 a.m. Cost to ride is $15 for singles and $25 for doubles.

There will be family activities such as a bounce house and games for children, raffles including Carolina Panther tickets, furniture, cornhole boards and more. A meal will follow the ride with music by DJ Tina Crews and Patsy Cline and Elvis impersonators.

The fund-raising activities such as this, the Zombie Prom and Mardis Gras festival, are necessary to keep the high level of service Milling Manor is known for, said Mark Goodwin, executive director.

“The people we serve are intellectually-challenged individuals … and are very community based,” Goodwin said. “Our individuals are very connected to the community, and are a part of the community.”

Milling Manor helps with daily living and life skills. Six live in the home on Milling Road in Mocksville. Others have their own apartments, and MMI workers check on them, and make sure they are taking care of themselves. Others live with local families.

“With everyone we work with, we are striving for their independence, and letting them make choices.”

State and Medicaid funding provides for about 80 percent of the working budget, and that is for only basics, Goodwin said. MMI is so successful because it goes well beyond what is required.

Participants all go to camp in the summer. “They love it. They’re there from Wednesday to Saturday, but that’s $3,000. These kinds of things (poker run) help with that. We’re always out doing things, and that can get expensive.”

They go to the movies and out to eat. They have cookouts.

“They have choices of what they want to do. We want high-quality services,” he said.

MMI operates Endless Possibilities, a store in Downtown Mocksville that sells some of the creations of the residents, as well as donations from the community.

It’s important for people to see MMI residents for their abilities, not their disabilities. Each resident gets to keep the money from one of their items sold.

Endless Possibilities also teaches skills. They have helped refurbish furniture, and regulary complete craft projects there.

“It creates a tremendous amount of awareness, too,” Goodwin said.
Endless Possibilities is open Tuesdays-Thursdays from 11 a.m.-4 p.m., and on Fridays from 1-7 p.m.

“It’s a unique opportunity for folks to come and see what these folks can create.”