Though Neighborhood Christian Centers, Inc. was formally established in 1978, the ministry actually began years earlier in Monroe and JoeAnn Ballard’s home, through personal ministry to young people in their sphere of influence. Since 1968, the Ballards have been foster parents to 75 children, all of them living with JoeAnn, Monroe and their four children for at least a year. In 1978, local churches and agencies in the Memphis area, saw the need for an urban neighborhood center and chose JoeAnn Ballard to be at the helm of Neighborhood Christian Centers, Inc.
In 1994, Jeff and Deneen Swanson, relocated from Memphis, TN to the Decatur area to establish Barnhart Crane and Rigging, Inc. Through years of volunteering at the NCC in Memphis they had a desire to open a NCC in the Decatur area.
The Neighborhood Christian Center of Alabama, Inc (NCC) was founded in 1994 by a small group of churches and local businessmen. The NCC was founded on the desire to provide a compassionate, Christ-centered ministry to the practical and spiritual needs of the city’s poor, envisioning a transformation in the lives of those we serve, in effect “changing a generation.” Through meeting practical and physical needs (food, clothes, furniture, household, shelter, and more) of those struggling in our community, we desire to identify individuals who want to break free from the cycle of poverty and the other struggles that hold them in bondage. Through the programs offered at the NCC, individuals and families are educated regarding job training through Jobs for Life, Parenting and Marriage classes, Financial Counseling, Life Skills 101, Celebrate Recovery, Life’s Healing Choices, Addiction Classes and more. But most of all, we desire to be the hands and feet of Christ to a hurting community sharing the Gospel not only in Word, but through actions as well.
In the midst of what seems hopeless to many, NCC shines a light of hope, striving to break the cycle of poverty and dependence prevalent in America’s inner cities. By breaking this cycle daily in practical and spiritual ways, we are reaching into the future to change lives of unborn generations. To those in need, NCC has come to be identified as a source of hope; to donors and volunteers, the organization has built a solid reputation as an established and effective means to respond to the needs of the poor.