On Monday, September 28, 2015, Wellcare of Central Georgia presented a sponsorship of $11,380 to Macon-Bibb County’s Shalom Zones to start or add on to community gardens and to host healthcare initiatives.

“I would like to thank WellCare of Georgia for joining with us as we move forward to make the Communities of Shalom here in Macon-Bibb healthier,” says Frank Austin.

Of the funds being provided, $7,880 is being provided to start or add on to community gardens in Lynmore Estates, Village Green, South Macon, Bellevue, Hillcrest, Unionville, and East Macon Shalom Zones. The remaining $3,500 is for 24 health-related activities in the Kings Park, Lynmore Estates, Village Green, South Macon, Bellevue, Hillcrest, Unionville, and East Macon Shalom Zones. This could include health fairs and other specific outreach activities that would be open to the public and feature resources and services provided by Wellcare.

Shalom Zone Sponsorship Announcement

“WellCare believes strongly in meeting our members’ needs in the context of their community, and the Shalom Zones fit that effort very well,” says NAME, WellCare’s Director of Medicaid Marketing, mentioning they already support more than 60 community gardens around the state. “We want to empower our members to improve their lives, and we can do that by supporting the Shalom Zones.”

Shalom Zones in Macon-Bibb
Shalom Zones in Macon-Bibb began with the former City of Macon and five neighborhood trainings in 2008. The program has since expanded to 10 neighborhoods: Lynmore Estates, Hillcrest, Village Green, Pleasant Hill, East Macon, Beall’s Hill, Unionville, Bellevue, South Macon, and Kings Park.

In August, residents from the 10 neighborhoods completed their Shalom Zone training and presented plans for improving their communities, and were recognized for their efforts to improve Macon-Bibb County.

Macon was the first municipality in the United States to embrace the Communities of Shalom on this broad of a level. Quarterly meetings are held in each Shalom Zone to identify needs and resources and to work on a strategic plan for improving the neighborhood.

Threads of Shalom
S – Systemic and Sustainable Change
H – Healing, Health, Harmony, and Wholeness
A – Asset-based Community Development
L – Love for God, Self, and Neighbor
O – Organizing for Community Transformation
M – Multicultural, Multi-faith Collaboration