A Mother’s Legacy: Transforming Lives through Home of Hope

Helen Barker, lovingly known as Mom Helen, dedicated her life to serving her community with compassion and humility. A humble woman of faith born and raised in Stone Mountain, Georgia, she found great joy in giving to those in need. Although Barker passed away in July 2023, her memory lives on.

Her servanthood inspired those in her community to give whatever they could, and she emphasized that no amount was too small. 

Her daughter and Home of Hope volunteer and donor, Peggy Slappey, explained that Barker instilled this value in her at an early age.

“There were times when she had nothing and knew of a single mom across town that had no grocery money, and she’d call one of us and say, ‘I need you to get a Publix gift card to Kennesaw today,’” said Peggy, laughing fondly. “And we had to get creative and figure out how to call that Publix in Kennesaw and get a gift card there because we did what Mother said.” 

As a single mother, Helen was especially drawn to other single moms and young women going through difficulties. She spent much of her time encouraging and praying over them.

Given Helen’s influence on her daughter, it’s no surprise that Peggy shares the same spirit of giving and has been involved with several charities over the years. However, it wasn’t until she attended a community event that she got connected with Home of Hope and became a donor. After being introduced to Maureen Kornowa, CEO and executive director of Home of Hope, Peggy toured the facility and was in awe of the organization.

“It was quite daunting, the task and the mission Maureen had,” said Peggy. “I told her, ‘You’ve got a lot to do here. You need people to be your wingmen to just support, encourage and help you however they can.’”

For the last 10 years, that’s exactly what she’s done, serving as a valuable advocate and donor for the organization. “I love the mission and the value of taking women who were struggling and walking with them to help them become more responsible, to be better mothers and to teach them skills they were never taught,” said Peggy.

She elaborates that Home of Hope’s impact is far deeper than providing shelter and food. It’s the ability to break both the situational and generational chains of poverty and as Peggy puts it, “transition them from being dependent to being independent, from homelessness to a home of their own.”

Over the last decade, Peggy has been encouraged by the women who have been transformed by the organization. 

“When the women got into desperate situations, Home of Hope was just a godsend that came into their lives and made a significant change, not just in the mothers but also in their children,” she said.

At Helen’s memorial service, in lieu of flowers, the family requested that donations be made to Home of Hope in her honor. 

“We chose Home of Hope as the charity because Mother’s heart would’ve wanted nothing more than [the money] to go to helping young mothers get back on their feet,” said Peggy. 

As a result, the organization received a significant contribution that will leave a long lasting impact on the lives of many families.

Continuing to follow in her mother’s footsteps, Peggy encourages us all to be active participants in our community. “Change is possible; we just have to help.”