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Foster care program receives $1 million boost

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. (BP) — The Tennessee Baptist Children’s Homes has received a gift of $1 million for its foster care program.

Former NBA franchise owner George Shinn and his wife Denise, who now live in Franklin, presented the first installment of the gift to TBCH officials Jan. 15 during a special ceremony on the TBCH campus. The gift will be dispersed over the course of several years. 

Shinn formerly owned the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets.

TBCH president Bryant Millsaps said, “This is a historic day.”

While the TBCH has received gifts of $1 million or more through estates, this is the largest single multi-year commitment that the entity has received, he said.

The Shinns are Baptists and learned of the TBCH ministry while attending the former West Franklin Baptist Church (now a campus of Brentwood Baptist Church). The Shinns attend both Brentwood Baptist and The People’s Church in Franklin.

After the Shinns moved their business operations to Nashville they began to look for ways “to give back” to the community. The couple visited TBCH’s Brentwood campus to learn more about the ministry and left impressed with the passion Millsaps had for the children, said Denise Shinn. 

George Shinn, a lifelong Baptist, noted he and his wife believe the Lord has led them to help support the work of TCBH.

“We made a business decision and a heart decision to help the Tennessee Baptist Children’s Homes. We know you are serving our master and we are committed. We are happy to make this gift.” 

Millsaps said the foster care program will be known as the Denise and George Shinn Foster Care Program in their honor.

The TBCH foster care program has begun and is expanding. “There will soon be a comprehensive system of safe homes across the state where children can be cared for,” Millsaps said.

“This gift today helps us take a quantum leap in that direction,” he noted.

Tennessee Baptist Convention Executive Director Randy C. Davis said, “We’re very thankful that God has supplied this generous gift to Great Commission work in Tennessee through the Tennessee Baptist Children’s Homes.

“This gift will accelerate and enhance our work with children in foster care,” he said.

Millsaps said the Shinns are “standing on the shoulders” of hundreds upon hundreds of men and women who trusted that the Lord would provide for the ministry during its 124-year history.

“This gift will have a profound impact on children who are not yet born and who at some point in their future will have their lives changed because you care,” he said.

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  • Lonnie Wilkey/Baptist and Reflector