Blank leads Falcons in community service

ATLANTA (AP) - Two miles west of the Georgia Dome, the Atlanta Falcons are bringing hope to one of the city's most troubled zip codes.

Falcons owner Arthur Blank joined 180 volunteers from his family businesses Thursday to improve conditions in a neighborhood that has too many problems to overcome by itself.

Tony Johns, COO of the nonprofit City of Refuge, says no community in Georgia has a higher rate of homicides, drug transactions, poverty and children from single-adult homes. Only 49 percent of the neighborhood's children graduate from high school.

Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff, coach Mike Smith and his entire staff worked alongside Blank to double the size of the City of Refuge's garden space, build an indoor playground and improve housing for single women.

About 80 homeless children live onsite.

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