Category Archives: Upcoming Events

Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency at Dragon Con 2016


The Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency is excited to announce that we have been selected to be the charity partner at this year’s Dragon Con event scheduled to be held in Downtown Atlanta September 2nd – September 5th. Dragon Con is the largest multi-media, popular culture convention focusing on science fiction and fantasy, gaming, comics, literature, art, music, and film in the universe.

We will have a designated fan table throughout the weekend for attendees to stop by and learn more about ACSS!


“Super excited to be working w/ to give back to our community & help our homeless population. ” -Dragon Con.



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Gordon Ellis: At the Heart of ACSS’ Mission

ACSS Employment Consultant Director Gordon Ellis

ACSS Employment Consultant Director Gordon Ellis

By Barbara Hughes | ACSS Volunteeer

This is the first in a series of blogs that will profile the ACSS staff.

I love volunteering with ACSS in whatever capacity I can be the most help. I’ve often wondered about the staff. I know them, of course. But what drives them to do what they do every day, often in a difficult environment? The best way to find out was to talk to each one and I thought I would share what they told me about working at ACSS.

Gordon Ellis is ACSS’ Employment Director. But I like to think of him as a force of nature: boundless energy and enthusiasm, brimming with ideas and with an ever-present smile. He sees his role as relationship building, both with prospective employers and with the VIPs (Visionary Innovative Partners) ACSS serves. Mostly, Gordon wants the VIPs to know that they have an advocate.

He came to ACSS via the Fulton County Human Services agency, working on the welfare-to-work program for single moms. On his first day at ACSS, he was thrown in at the deep end by leading his first CareerWorks workshop. But I don’t think that fazed him one bit!

You won’t find Gordon using the word “homeless” to describe the VIPs. He uses terms such as “in transition” or “hitting a speed bump,” but never the “H-word.” His other pet peeve is when a VIP describes him or herself as “just,” as in “just a truck driver” or “just a housekeeper in a hotel.” So the workshops Gordon runs are designed to give the attendees confidence and change their mindset about being a “just.” Mock interviews and resume writing are two components of Gordon’s workshops. He invites local businesses to participate, which lends an air of reality.

He has developed 35 to 40 close business partnerships with local businesses. Many participated in the third annual Job Fair held in February and Gordon described it as a big success. The results are still coming in but he said that right now, 20 to 25 VIPs have secured jobs and several more are still interviewing. This, at the end of the day, is what ACSS is all about: jobs.

Many businesses will be attending the third annual Job Week during the week of May 13th at ACSS’ offices in midtown. Each day will feature an industry, such as security, warehousing, administration and retail. Each business will provide an overview followed by Q&A with the VIPs. The prospective employers provide notes following informal interviews and then official interviews are scheduled.

I asked Gordon what his personal vision for ACSS was. Without hesitation, he said, “to go out of business.” Isn’t that a vision we all can share?

Come join us! Donate. Volunteer. You can help ACSS break the cycle of homelessness.

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Filed under ACSS Programs, CareerWorks, Upcoming Events

Cafe 458 Sunday Brunch Returns March 3: “Eat Well. Do Good.”

By ACSS Volunteer Barbara Hughes

Are you homesick for some of Grannie’s grits ‘n all? Do you long for Mom’s French Toast and all that goes with it? Well, we may not have Mom or Grannie but Café 458 has Chef Tiffany Wills. And starting on Sunday, March 3rd, you can sample her “Southern comfort food with a twist” every Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m..

Chef Tiffany has researched past favorites from other Café 458 menus and raided her Grandma Mary’s recipe box to create a new menu with something for everyone.

“It’s all of the recipes that my grandmother cooked for me with a little spin on it,” Wills said. “It’s ingredients that you’re not expecting.”

She’s also created salad and sandwich choices because, as Chef Tiffany told me, people are looking for lighter brunch offerings these days.

In addition to helping themselves to a delicious meal, Cafe 458 patrons are helping to break the cycle of homelessness. Because Cafe 458 has an all volunteer wait staff, all proceeds, including tips (gratefully accepted!), support the Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency.

The non-profit organization provides life skills and job-readiness training to individuals who are ready to make the transition from homelessness to self-sufficiency.

Located in Atlanta’s historic Old Fourth Ward at 458 Edgewood Avenue, Café 458 has been closed for renovations since late spring of 2012. But ACSS Board Member Eric McBride, with a team of volunteers, is on track to have everything shining and ready for the brunch guests at our grand reopening on March 3rd.

For those who have visited Café 458 before, you will notice that brunch is being served in the front of the building, which is more spacious and open.

For more information, “like'” Café 458 on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @cafe458.

Reservations can be made online at And please share with your friends Chef Tiffany’s video on YouTube:

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Happy GA Gives Day from ACSS!

Today is the day we’ve been waiting for. Now it’s time to act. GA Gives Day is a special 24 hour online giving event and Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency is a proud participant.

If you’ve already donated, thank you! If not, it’s easy to do. Just check out our GA Gives Day profile, and share it with friends.

Let’s make TODAY the biggest day of giving in Georgia. Click if You Care.

Like GA Gives Day on and follow the movement on Twitter @GAGIVES

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Love ACSS? Share the Love on GA Gives Day!

GA_GIVES_WEB_LogoTomorrow, December 6th, our community will come together for a special 24-hour online giving event called GA Gives Day and Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency needs YOU to join us!

We want to see how many individual donations we can collect in 24 hours. This is YOUR chance to make a real difference, right here in our community.

If you love ACSS and support our work in breaking the cycle of homelessness in Atlanta and beyond, please show your love by donating online on December 6. And be sure to tell your family and friends. (It’s not bragging when you’re encouraging others to join you in making a real difference).

Click If You Care!

Like GA Gives Day on and follow us on Twitter @GAGIVES

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Be a Hero! Support ACSS on GA Gives Day

GA_GIVES_WEB_LogoYou’ve probably seen videos of flash mobs — those seemingly spontaneous groups of people who assemble in a public area to sing, dance or deliver some sort of theatrical performance. Thursday, December 6 is your chance to join a statewide “flash mob of giving” by supporting Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency on GA Gives Day.

Everyone can be a philanthropist. A $10 donation will make an incredible difference!

Tell your friends! Visit the ACSS GA Gives Day donor page at:

Share it on Facebook and Twitter! Help us get the word out about GA Gives Day as we support ACSS and strengthen the nonprofit community in Georgia.  So, mark your calendar for Thursday, December 6th and “click if you care!”

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Join a “Flash Mob of Giving” on GA Gives Day

GA_GIVES_WEB_LogoGA Gives Day is coming up December 6 and you have the power to make it a success… just by using the same device on which you’re reading this blog!

We invite you to become a fundraiser for Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency on It’s an easy and fun way to show how much you love ACSS among your family and friends and inspire others to donate to a cause that is breaking the cycle of homelessness in Atlanta and beyond.

All you have to do is go to our GA Gives Day profile and click the “Become a Fundraiser” button on our page. You will create your own profile and be recognized as a fundraiser right on our page.

Click here for instructions and a video to help you get set up. It’s easy! Join us to make GA Gives Day a virtual “flash mob of giving” for ACSS on December 6.

Like GA Gives Day on Facebook and follow @GAGIVES on Twitter.

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