When Beverly Oxley opened her solo private practice in 2003, little did she know that it would explode in new growth and opportunities over the next few years. Soon, that fledging part-time practice grew to exponential proportions until she realized the dire need for a larger facility and additional high-quality licensed therapists to work with her. When no adequate space was available for rent, she and her husband, Paul Oxley, took a colossal leap of faith and built Wellsprings Psychological Resources, a state-of-the-art 4,000 square foot counseling center in Franklin Springs. It opened its doors on November 15, 2009. Currently, there are ten licensed providers (some part-time) who provide high quality therapy, psychological assessment, educational training classes, and support groups to the communities in northeast Georgia. Wellsprings is proud of its reputation of compassionate, competent care to its clients.
After several years of working with the foster care system and making frequent court appearances on behalf of children, Dr. Oxley, along with several other professionals, recognized a critical need for trained therapists to be a part of the family visitation for foster children. Parents lost custody of their children for a reason and, until that reason was addressed, long-term changes could not be expected in the behaviors of the parents. In April, 2011 Dr. Oxley invited a number of community professionals to a “needs assessment forum” to share their ideas of the most pressing social needs of families in northeast Georgia. An outcome of this meeting was Dr. Oxley’s growing conviction that a family visitation center was needed in this area of Georgia. With the support of her husband and the collaboration of many prayer partners and friends, a vision emerged of a family visitation center and much more – mentoring, educational classes, support groups, and interactive training of parents by a family therapist. It was evident to them that God was calling them to be able to provide several additional social services to the children and families who needed help.
In September, 2013 Dr. Oxley wrote the application for a nonprofit corporation, during which time she felt inspired to name it “The Ark Family Preservation Center” because of its mission to save and preserve families, in a similar way that Noah’s original ark was built to preserve the human race. In January, 2014, the vision of The Ark Family Preservation Center became a reality with an IRS full approval for a 501(c)3 corporation (just 3 months after the 1023 application was submitted).
Recently, The Ark has been contacted by some DFCS Directors for the possibility of providing supervised visitation to families in foster care. They have heard of the excellent services and would like for their families to receive that type of service from The Ark. The paperwork for reimbursement by the state is in process but will likely be approved in the next few months. But, more space and more therapists are needed to adequately fulfill these requests.
As clearly noted above, the history of the Ark Family Preservation Center is intertwined with Wellsprings Psychological Resources. The foundations of high quality care provided by competent, compassionate therapists at Wellsprings have made it possible for The Ark to enjoy a good reputation within its community. Wellsprings has paved the way for The Ark in its mission of serving families who have been shattered by domestic violence, drug abuse, sexual abuse, addictions, and even suicide. Its reason for existence is to interrupt these cycles of dysfunctionality so that the next generation has a better chance of a happy, healthy, productive life. The Ark hopes to improve the quality of life of people to enable them to make important contributions to our society and our nation.