Open Arms Care – Nashville

12641 Old Hickory Blvd.
Antioch, TN 37013
Telephone: 615-776-1011
Fax: 615-776-1012

Our Executive Director conveys the spirit of the Open Arms Care philosophy.
Be inspired by her staff.
Connect to their story.
Experience the positive difference.

[]-11357510244_4Open Arms Care of Nashville strives to help individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities reach their maximum potential through life skills development, vocational services, recreational therapies and community integration. Our services include Community Outreach, Volunteering, Physical Management, an Art Program, and much more.

Creative Commons “Nashville Skyline” by
Elliott Billings is licensed under CC BY 3.0

A Rich History

The Nashville city operation opened group homes in November of 1990 and were at capacity (64 people) in July of 1991.

Eight homes, located throughout the south Nashville area; each a residence for eight clients. The four male and four female, handicapped accessible homes, were built specifically with our clients in mind. Located on acres of land, a tranquil atmosphere with the space to move about freely gives residents pride in their living environment. Outdoor patios allow for the enjoyment of the scenic beauty found in peaceful, rural settings.[]-132097463_4 - Copy

A home away from home, furnishings are considered with a resident’s personality in mind. Bedrooms are personalized to specific interests; some rooms are decorated with sports memorabilia, wrestling heroes, or music superstars. Resident personal items truly help to make it a home away from home.

“Creative Commons Tail of the Dragon#3
by William Klos is licensed under CC BY 3.0

Our Clients

NAS Client with AmandaVarying disabilities; autism, spina bifida, cerebral palsy, or blindness, may bring a client to Open Arms Care. Qualifications for admission are a diagnosis of intellectual disabilities (MR) before the age of eighteen and the need for twenty four hour supervision. We do not discriminate based on the severity of any disability.

While residing at Open Arms Care, individuals have the opportunity to be a part of their circle of support
[]-9356446186_4planning meeting, where they identify areas that skill attainment is desired. The circle of support, or interdisciplinary team, works together developing and monitoring the plan of care for their number one priority, their client.

Most clients have lived at Open Arms Care for more than five years. Some clients have resided at Open Arms Care for 24 years. The current age range of our clientele is 23 to 73 years old.



Creative Commons “Sunflower in the evening light
by deldevries is licensed under CC BY 3.0


picApplicants who are drawn to Open Arms Care go through a thorough screening process. Local and national fingerprinting checks, a national criminal data base, an abuse registry, and a substantiated incident search all take place. Candidates also go through a comprehensive interview process, and will interview with at least two members of the management team before an offer of employment is made.

Open Arms Care has a zero tolerance policy for any forms of abuse, neglect, or mistreatment. Nashville Client Photo newsletterAll allegations of any form of abuse or neglect are reported to state agencies and are investigated internally.

We are proud to share that our longest tenured employee has been with us for 24 years!

Learn more about the caring individuals that make a difference! <Click here> to discover the traits and talents of  some amazing individuals!

<Visit> our Careers page for employment opportunities.

Residential Admissions

Applying for admission to Open Arms Care can be done by contacting Payton Thaxton, Program Services Director, at 615-776-1011, extension 1209. Qualifications for admission are a diagnosis of intellectual disabilities (MR) before the age of eighteen and the need for twenty four hour Nashville client Prom photo 141supervision. Supervision may vary from a reminder to evacuate during a fire drill or requiring the need for staff assistance for bathing and feeding.

A current physical (within 90 days) and psychological examination are needed prior to submitting the Pre-Admission Evaluation application. Once these documents are received, the Pre-Admission Evaluation will be submitted electronically and typically an answer will be received within two weeks.

The average wait time for an admission at Open Arms Care is approximately three years. Families are encouraged to complete an admission application even if they are not interested in immediate services.

A client, together with their family/conservator(s) may at any time choose to conclude a client’s residency with Open Arms Care. As each client is like a family member to us, we’ll work together to ensure a smooth transition of care.

Residential Services

Nashville Client Photo SoundsAround the clock you’ll find staff members serving client needs. Significant teaching opportunities are harvested during that eight hour shift. Teaching clients daily living activities, whether cooking, cleaning, washing clothes, or bathing, staff members are there every step of the way. It’s not all work! Staff members develop and implement monthly recreation schedules too. Clients enjoy a wide range of entertainment NAS website photooutings; here is just a sampling of events attended:

But, none of these activities take place without proper training. Extensive orientation and training measures support direct care efforts, and are on-going. Safety is a top priority for Open Arms Care staff. Every effort is made to anticipate potential situations, and plan for avoidance.

Nashville Client Photo Bike RidingResidential homes have a Program Manager and a House Manager. Together, they are responsible for the overall function of the home. They not only ensure that the residence is maintained in a clean and organized manner, but direct all activities, from grocery shopping to medical care!

The Program Manager acts as the case manager for each individual and is the liaison with families and conservators. A plan of care for each individual directs the coordination of medical care, physical therapy and occupational therapy services

Senior Program

Two of our residences have been identified as caring for a more medically fragile clientele. These individuals have made the decision to take on more of a “retirement” role where activities take on a slower pace. They participate in a local retirement club along with community activities geared toward our senior residents.

NAS Sammy1Let’s not forget to mention Sammy!
Sammy is a one year old Labradoodle resident.

He was chosen forNAS Sammy his calm demeanor and ability to adapt to varying personalities. Sammy provides love and companionship to those who find it a little more difficult to open up to staff or their house mates.


Day Program

Life skills are taught in a manner that enables each client to successfully achieve goals at their own pace. Nashville Client Rose HawkinsRoutines are established to provide developmentally/intellectually challenged individuals with a sense of stability. When training or teaching skill sets, we take steps to simplify challenges for each individual; however, we adhere to a defined set of protocols.

We are firmly committed to the fact that our clients interpret the world and their surroundings differently. For instance, our Active Treatment programs are evident in each classroom. We take pride in being very creative and unconventional in our teaching methods. Currently, we are utilizing The Mozart Effect,® a music program designed to integrate many sensorial qualities. Not only is music fun, it simultaneously deals with speech, movement, emotions, and articulation!

Day Program services evolve to meet the ever changing needs of those we serve. In developing our curriculum we strive to ensure client participation for more than just teaching. We want to make a difference.


The Mozart Effect

NAS music room IMG_6599Music is a very important component of our Day Program activities. Research suggests that music provides energetic and positive emotional qualities. In 1993 psychologists’ findings revealed that playing Mozart increases spatial-temporal reasoning. The role of music and healing, physical and mental health, cognitive function and various physiological metrics continues to be explored. We embrace the beauty of the music as well as the neurology of musicality.

Learn more about Professor Paul Robertson, the leader of the prestigious Medici String Quartet. He has combined an international concert career with his passion for exploring musical responses in scientific research.

Flying Brushes new logo

Flying Brushes Art Program

Nashville art program photoWithin the day services program we have the Flying Brushes art program. It’s an opportunity for all clients to participate in a one-on-one painting experience. A trained tracker acts as the artist’s hands when they are physically unable to apply the medium to a canvas. The tracker takes cues from the artist either by eye gaze, gesture, or pointing, as they are directed to express the artist’s creativity.

Art Exhibition

Join us on the first Saturday of each month for the Nashville Art Crawl. Our artists currently have their artwork displayed at the Tennessee Art League building, at 219 5th Avenue North, Nashville, from 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

<Click here> to find out more about our art programs. Enjoy the creative artistry of Open Arms Care and find out how you can purchase your own original artwork.

NAS art room IMG_6607

For more information regarding the day program services, please contact Paula Williamson Paula Williamson and Easter Bunny


or Sharron Dennis, Day Services Director at 615-776-5040, extension 166.


Make a Difference

Open Arms Care relies on the generosity of families, friends and our community; your support makes all the difference. Be a part of something special for those who are very special.

Thanks to your generous support, we can continue to expand the possibilities for those we serve.

“You guys do so much for so many special people. It is my HONOR to be a part of your organization.
God bless you all.”
  -Supporter, Bruce Edens

Major credit cards are accepted – Mastercard, American Express, VISA, Discover, and more!



nashville golf tournament client photoJoin us for our annual Golf Tournament and Silent Auction. Each year we come together to enjoy a round of golf, some great camaraderie and the beautiful outdoors. All with a single goal in mind, to benefit the Nashville city operation clients.

<Click here> to find out more how you or your organization can enjoy making a positive difference.

Nashville Golf Tournament 2013 IMG_0346








Donate with Kroger Community Rewards

Kroger community rewards The Kroger Family of Stores is committed to bringing hope and help to local communities. Join them by supporting Open Arms Care through your purchases made at Kroger.

<Click here> to follow the enrollment link.

Select Create Account.

Under Account Settings you can fill out your information, and the last section is were you enroll in Community Rewards.

Click on the Enroll button, search for Open Arms Care and select. You will be asked to click on the Enroll button once more and your registration will be completed.

We deeply value your support, and the support of the Kroger Community Rewards Program.

amazonsmile icon

Follow us on Twitter


Donate with AmazonSmile – You Shop, They Donate


Open Arms Care Foundation

What is AmazonSmile?

AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support Open Arms Care Foundation every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to Open Arms Care Foundation.

How do I shop at AmazonSmile?

To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. You may also want to add a bookmark to AmazonSmile to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at AmazonSmile.

Which products on AmazonSmile are eligible for charitable donations?

Tens of millions of products on AmazonSmile are eligible for donations. You will see eligible products marked “Eligible for AmazonSmile donation” on their product detail pages. Recurring Subscribe-and-Save purchases and subscription renewals are not currently eligible.

Can I use my existing account on AmazonSmile?

Yes, you use the same account on and AmazonSmile. Your shopping cart, Wish List, wedding or baby registry, and other account settings are also the same.

How do I select a charitable organization to support when shopping on AmazonSmile?

On your first visit to AmazonSmile, you need to select Open Arms Care Foundation to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. They will remember your selection, and then every eligible purchase you make on AmazonSmile will result in a donation.

How much of my purchase does Amazon donate?

The AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price from your eligible AmazonSmile purchases. The purchase price is the amount paid for the item minus any rebates and excluding shipping & handling, gift-wrapping fees, taxes, or service charges. From time to time, we may offer special, limited time promotions that increase the donation amount on one or more products or services or provide for additional donations to charitable organizations. Special terms and restrictions may apply. Please see the relevant promotion for complete details.

Can I receive a tax deduction for amounts donated from my purchases on AmazonSmile?

Donations are made by the AmazonSmile Foundation and are not tax deductible by you.


Sign up for our newsletter by using the form below!

Request Newsletter

    Select the newsletter(s) you'd like to receive