Nobel Prize in Literature recipient W. B. Yeats said: “Education is not the filling of a bucket but the lighting of a fire.” Numerous flames are aglow, thanks to the nonprofit Unite Homeschool. Its mission is to connect, equip and support home-school families in north Georgia and beyond. The network accomplishes this by helping home-school parents spark a love of learning in their children — through field trips, parties, outdoor events, transcript help, mentor support and more — via an online community of caring families.
“Our services are designed to enrich and support the efforts of all types of home educators, regardless of style or learning methods,” founder Angela Pilcher said. “As a home-school mom of two boys, I started to build the Unite community to support home-schooling families more than two years ago. After exponential growth in our community, I knew that I had to make a way for this incredible group of people to stay connected, even after I was done home schooling. The best way to do that was to become a nonprofit organization. Unite Homeschool became an official 501(c)(3) nonprofit in March 2023.”
Unite Homeschool offers a private, resource-rich, online community that has the feeling of social media without any of the drama found there. Its network is focused on creating intentional encouragement and connection for the busy home-school educator.
“I love to encourage parents who desire to home-school, and believe, with help, anyone can do it,” said Jennifer Henn, local author and mentor for Unite Homeschool. To help her mentees, Henn wrote a book called “Take the Mystery Out of Homeschooling.”
“Now that my children are grown, I want to help the next generation of home-schooling families,” Henn said. Her roles at Unite Homeschool include answering parents’ questions, developing and writing how-to content, holding teaching seminars and sharing helpful posts.
When asked what makes this new online community any different from what exists on Facebook, Pilcher answered with seven reasons:
- Big Tech is not watching or censoring our interactions.
- We are a large network with local groups — all home-school focused.
- We connect people with new friends — lots of them
- No trolls allowed.
- We have special-interest clubs, such as Outdoor Hiking and Cherokee County Weekly P.E.
- A topic index and search.
- A full calendar of events and field trips.
For full-access members, yearly plans are available online, along with mentoring, a high school coaching club and more.
Unite Homeschool members are excited to be a part of the network. “I feel like I have stumbled upon a treasure trove of friendships and resources,” Becca Carson said. “I like that the Unite Homeschool network isn’t on a mainstream social media platform,” Michelle Paul said. Katie Warner shared: “It’s such a great resource for connecting with the local home-school community.”
Unite Homeschool recently held its first high school prom, Once Upon a Dream, which took place at Pleasant Union Farm in Canton. The community is welcome to attend future events:
- North Georgia Homeschool Resource Fair, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. May 20 at the Cherokee County Recreation Center in Woodstock.
- Homeschool Sports Camp, May 15-19 at Cherokee Veterans Park in Canton. Register at unitehomeschool.com/camp.
- Homeschool Field Day, June 7 at Swift-Cantrell Park in Kennesaw.
- Teens in the Driver’s Seat safe driving program, 5:30-7:30 p.m. June 9 at Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge of Woodstock.
– Susan Schulz is a Bible teacher and mentor who lives and plays on the Etowah River in Canton. Connect with her on social media or at susanbrowningschulz.com.