The Rube and Hester McCray Memorial Alumni/Training Center will be a welcome and much-needed addition to the campus and the larger Lake Waccamaw community.

This center will also provide a location better equipped to meet the ongoing comprehensive training needs of the Boys and Girls Homes staff.

In addition, it will meet a broad community need for a meeting space with the appropriate technology and accommodations for civic club and other group gatherings from across the state of North Carolina. This will bring new people to campus to learn about our mission and new support to our youth not only through the additional revenue, but also through the potential mentorships that could form through the interactions.

The center’s location adjacent to the picnic shelter will provide expanded opportunities for community gatherings with the benefit of a rain location just yards from the primary choice. The design calls for restroom facilities with direct access from the outdoors, meeting a significant need for all events held in the picnic shelter.

Our current youth will be able to use the facility for learning opportunities like seminars and workshops that will enhance their education to enable a brighter future.

Currently, there is no centralized archive location on the campus, meaning that the history is scattered in various offices and filing cabinets. This limits the historical legacy from being shared in any formal way. These new facilities would alleviate this problem by serving as a historical archives center as well as a meeting location for alumni and other events on the Lake Waccamaw campus.

About Rube & Hester McCray

Rube McCray served as the Executive Director at Boys Home from 1958 - 1971. He arrived with his wife Hester and immediately petitioned the major civic organizations in the state to support the boys and provide residences for them. As a result, the Civitans, Lions, Jaycees, Kiwanians, Rotarians and Optimists built cottages on the campus.

The boys really admired and respected Mr. and Mrs. McCray. They took a personal interest in each boy and knew everything about him.

Mrs. McCray was very much an active part of the campus. She would invite the boys to her house on their birthdays and bake cakes for them. It is told that she even baked pies for the boys to encourage them to make all A's on their report cards. She directed the Boys Homes’ Traveling Choir for many years giving the boys the opportunity to present themselves and travel throughout the state of North Carolina. She was also instrumental in getting the North Carolina Federation of Women's Clubs involved in supporting the Home.

The suggestion of passionate alumni, the facility would not only be a means of leaving a legacy for early directors Rube and Hester McCray, but also for the alumni who have passed through the doors over the years.

The estimated project cost is $250,000.