Positive Attitude Youth Center strives to provide the youth of the community with a safe, positive, and social learning environment where they have the opportunity to mature physically, spiritually, and emotionally.
The Positive Attitude Youth Center (PAYC) was founded in 1995 by Pastor Kerry Richmond and his wife Eunice Richmond as a faith-based organization seeking to enable children and young adults to mature physically, emotionally and spiritually. Since June 1995, the Positive Attitude Youth Center has provided a variety of programs for children between the ages of 6-18, in addition to providing services for their parents.
Most of the children who attend the PAYC are from at-risk families that reside in the poverty-stricken areas in the community. We accept referrals for families transitioning from the homeless shelter to permanent housing. As well, many children who attend the Positive Attitude Youth Center live in stable homes with loving parents and guardians who wish to send their children to a quality educational and enrichment center.
PAYC partners with the Alamance Burlington School System and the Alamance County Department of Social Services, as well as others, to connect families with the services and programs the center provides. 85% of children who attend the youth center achieve better grades and exhibit growth-mindset in school.
Our programs include after-school, tutoring, recreation and family events. The children have the opportunity to participate in a summer program which includes sports, music, Bible study, and field trips. Finally, we serve parents who can attend life skills classes throughout the year.
In 1994, Pastor Kerry Richmond founded the Positive Attitude Youth Center. While in search for his life ministry, he felt inspired to serve the families and their children in Alamance County. Along with his wife, Eunice, in March, 1995, Richmond opened his first after-school program with 22 students in their care. The center was on the corner of North Mebane and Hawkins, the location of a former nightclub where a
close friend of Richmond’s had been killed. For the next 8 months, this was PAYC’s first home. Howard Thaxton chaired the first Board of Directors.
In October 1995, PAYC moved into the Sellars Gunn Educational Center on Apple Street. They shared a space in the Sellars Gunn gym with another program. Still, the ministry doubled in size. In 1996, PAYC moved into the clubhouse of the Eastbrook Apartments where the Richmonds resided at the time. As the clubhouse could only hold about 20 students, PAYC expanded with more after-school programs in other apartment complexes including Autumn Lane, Beaumont, Tucker Street, and the Burlington Housing Authority. During this time they recruited their volunteer base.
In 1998, PAYC shared space in the Allied Church of Alamance County’s Homeless Shelter. There was more room and the after-school and summer programs continued to grow. In 2000, they moved once again to another former night club, the Hot Spot, located on North Church Street. This larger space gave PAYC enough room to expand more than ever before. From 2000 until 2003, PAYC averaged about 50
students in the after-school programs and about 60 participants in the summer club.
In 2003, PAYC moved to Glen Raven in a space that included access to a playground and an outdoor basketball court. They also added two passenger vans and a bus, which allowed PAYC to pick up students from 10 different ABSS schools for the after-school program. Soon, PAYC worked in coordination with other local agencies and organizations such as Teen Achievers, new program for court-ordered juveniles and at-risk teenagers. Through this, Richmond and PAYC created an association with the law enforcement community that has seen Richmond play an important role in local criminal justice.
Finally, in 2003, the Hayden Harman Foundation donated land on Graham-Hopedale Road to build a new PAYC facility. In March of 2005, PAYC had their ground-breaking ceremony. While still headquartered at Glen Raven during three years of construction PAYC raised enough funds for the grand opening celebration on October 1, 2008.
Now, with the PAYC Board, Positive Attitude has over 60 students in after school, 50 students in Summer Club, a 5-Star daycare with 40 students, Positive Day School (a K - 12 school) with 30 students, and a recreational program that serves over 70 students. PAYC also now has Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops. The facilities feature a gym, playground, indoor and outdoor basketball courts, a computer lab, classrooms, and even an outdoor walking trail that allows for exercise and personal contemplation.
PAYC is blessed to have been serving the community for over 28 years, and anticipates a solid future as an educational and social anchor for Alamance County.
Pastor Kerry Richmond
Founder & Executive Director
After sensing a clear message from the Lord to guide and serve the children in Alamance County, Pastor Kerry started PAYC in 1995. An Alamance County native and graduate from Hugh M. Cummings High School, Pastor Kerry attended Shaw University and North Carolina A&T State University. He graduated from Alamance County Community College with a degree in Criminal Justice. In addition, he received a Christian Counseling certificate from Pinnacle Bible College and his Christian Education and Biblical Studies degree from Carolina University (formerly Piedmont International University), and has been serving as pastor at New Life Community Baptist Church. Pastor Kerry enjoys helping children grow, learn, and overcome life's challenges.
Latasha (Tasha) Watlington
Office Administrator/Program Coordinator
As Program Coordinator, Tasha administers our programs as well as working directly with the children daily. She was one of the first PAYC participants when her parents started the program in 1995. She participated in the after-school program and the summer camp until graduating high school. Tasha initially played basketball at Methodist University and then eventually transferred to NC A&T, where she graduated in 2007 with a bachelor's degree in Social Work.
Executive Director: Positive Daycare
Eunice has been fearlessly leading our Positive Daycare since 2011. She graduated from Alamance Community College with a degree in Early Childhood Development. You'll often see Ms. Eunice walking through PAYC with a line of little ones following closely behind. They love her!
Positive Daycare Lead Teacher
Sharnice started working at Positive Day School in 2021, teaching 2nd and 3rd graders. Sharnice has a Bachelor's degree in early childhood education from Ashford University. She has been teaching since she graduated high school and has previously worked with Head Start in both Greensboro and Burlington, NC. She now works as a lead daycare teacher.
Positive Daycare Lead Teacher
Teresa Dorsey has been a preschool teacher for over 2 years and she has been with Positive Day School for 1.5 years. Teresa has two twin boys that she adores and they have inspired her to continue her education. Teresa will be continuing her education in the spring at GTCC, and she is excited to continue her growth in early childhood education. She now works as lead daycare teacher.