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Our Building

Former Union High School Transformed

In 1992, when Los Angeles erupted in violence and riots because of racial tension following the Rodney King verdict, the delegates to the General Conference of The United Methodist Church were meeting in Louisville, Kentucky.  In an unprecedented step, they stopped their legislative proceedings to discuss cities in turmoil. These discussions resulted in the creation of Shalom Zones and the Shalom Initiative. “Shalom”, meaning peace, harmony, and wholeness, was an initiative designed to transform communities that were mired in despair & poverty, and to address the root causes of the anger and destruction triggered by the King verdict.

In 1996, local Methodist pastors fully embraced the Shalom Initiative as a way to bring hope and healing specifically to the struggling community of Clearview Heights in Gallatin. Those early efforts were focused on physical cleanup of the area and working to ensure the safety of Clearview residents, in turn benefitting all Gallatin residents. What began as a single denomination initiative was soon embraced by community leaders and citizens of the entire city of Gallatin. The Gallatin community came together to coordinate resources and ideas to further the mission of the Shalom Initiative, and on November 5, 1999, through the committed efforts of these individuals, Gallatin Shalom Zone was officially incorporated as a non-profit 501(c)3.

The search began for a brick-and-mortar building that could serve the community as a resource center and community hub. Having sat vacant for years, the former Union High School building in the heart of the Clearview Heights community was deeded to Gallatin Shalom Zone in 2004. Steeped in history, and with deep-rooted ties to the community, Union High was the logical choice to house GSZ. Built in 1950 during the time of segregation in the country, Union High served as the African American high school in Gallatin for the next 20 years. In 1970, federal laws were passed that mandated integration, and all Union High students were integrated into Gallatin High School. Not long after, the Union High building became the home of Rucker Stewart Middle School until 1997. At that time, Rucker Stewart Middle moved to its current location and all operations in the Union High building ceased. After taking ownership in 2004, GSZ began a capitol campaign and was able to begin building renovation and reconstruction in January of 2008. That same year, in April, ten agencies along with Gallatin Shalom Zone Inc. were able to move into the building and begin serving our community.

While no longer strictly a Methodist initiative, “Shalom” remains at the heart of the Shalom Zone mission by offering programs and events that promote wholeness, prosperity, harmony, and peace. Shalom Zone values these initial ideologies and welcomes the opportunity to serve the community in a way that honors the monumental vision and legacy of Union High School and its students and faculty, while expanding and growing to meet current needs.

Partners

We are pleased to share our building with the following community partners:

Mid-Cumberland Head Start

Ph: 615-742-1113 ext.8310
mcheadstart.org

Mid-Cumberland Community Action Agency (MCCAA)

Ph: 615-742-1113 x8300
midcumberland.org

NAACP

Ph: 615-822-7840
naacpsumnercounty.org

Gallatin Police Department – North

Ph: 615-452-1313
gallatintn.gov/340/Police-Department

Volunteer Behavioral Health

Ph: 615-452-1354
vbhcs.org/locations/gallatin/

The Access Academy

Ph: 615-852-1811

Catholic Charities - Our Chance

www.ourchancetn.org/eligibility

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