By SALLY SEXTON
For more than a decade, the Texas Pythian Home has provided aid to children and families in need.
To celebrate the home’s 104th anniversary, the Texas Pythian Home will host Pythian Home Week Monday through Friday, in order to showcase the facilities and spread the word about the home to the public.
“For whatever reason, people don’t seem to know a lot about us and what we do,” Holly Boyer, director of child care at the home, said.
In order to help spread the word, Pythian staff will be giving tours to visitors Monday through March 8 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Special tours are available throughout the year by appointment only.
Sponsored by the Knights of Pythias, the home opened its doors in march of 1909 as a home for widows and orphans of the members of the Knights. Through the years, it evolved into an aid for families and children.
Currently, the Pythian Home has eight youth living on the property, four boys and four girls.
“That’s a pretty low number for us,” administrator Lisa Watson said. “We fluctuate a lot, but 20 to 30 is pretty good.”
Located off E. Bankhead Highway, the ‘Castle on the Hill’ provides youth from as far away as east Texas with a living experience as close to routine as possible.
Children are housed in dorms designed to function more like a hotel suite, complete with bedrooms, a kitchenette, a joint living area and bathrooms.
Husband and wife teams are assigned to each dorm, taking on more of a parental role.
“Our dorm parents are paid as full-time staff and they do work 24/7,” Watson said. “They treat these kids like their own kids. It also provides consistency because the same people are always taking care of you.”