Buckner Opens Family Pathways Campus, Honors Dallas Philanthropist Annette C. Simmons

DALLAS -- Buckner International opened the Annette C. Simmons Buckner Family Pathways Campus during a 2 p.m. ceremony April 20 on the Buckner Children’s Home campus at 5200 S. Buckner Blvd. in Dallas.

The expansion is the result of a two-year, $4.75 million fundraising initiative for Family Pathways, Buckner Foster Care and Adoption, and Buckner Crisis Relief and Aid. The Family Pathways portion of the expansion will serve up to 16 single-parent families enrolled in the transition program. The new campus is named for well-known Dallas philanthropist Annette C. Simmons, who provided a lead gift for the construction.

Buckner Foundation President David M. Slover said the event “celebrates the generosity and kindness of Mrs. Simmons and several other families and foundations. For years unseen, this campus will be a refuge and place for families to start over; to reach for a future that would otherwise have been beyond their grasp.”

Slover said the Buckner Family Pathways program provides transitional services designed to strengthen families, encouraging education as a way for single parents to become self-sufficient. The transformational ministry, he added, “impacts two generations by impacting the life of the parent and redirecting the children away from a path of poverty and dependency.”

More than 200 people gathered for the ceremony Friday afternoon. Speakers included Abe Jaquez, administrator of Buckner Children and Family Services in North Texas; Dr. Albert Reyes, president of Buckner International; David Slover, president of the Buckner Foundation and executive vice president of Buckner International; Ken Hall, retired president and CEO of Buckner International; and Dwanna Lumpkin, a Family Pathways program participant.

“Throughout the ages, human beings have lived in search of home,” Reyes said. “For most of us, home is a place where love is unconditional, where acceptance is free and abundant, and where security is unshakable. That is the kind of home I was privileged to grow up in. For most of us, home is the container which stores the treasures of life, the heart’s receptacle for sweeter days and cherished thoughts of childhood. It is those very memories that pull us homeward throughout our lives, no matter where we may be.

“But we are here today to open The Annette C. Simmons Buckner Family Pathways Campus because there are those who have never known the sweet aroma of home; those for whom the idea of “home” is not a pleasant memory. There are single parents living on the edge of life who need only the opportunity. That’s what Family Pathways is all about; it’s about opportunity and hope for a brighter tomorrow.”

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