Chinese Auction to benefit Sojourners

By Lorna Hart - [email protected]

OHIO VALLEY— Sojourners Care Network on Thursday will conduct its sixth annual Chinese Auction. All donations will be used to support holiday activities for transitional living participants and foster care youth.

The auction will be at Vinton County High School and doors open at 4 p.m.

Sojourners is a nonprofit youth development organization founded in 1999. The organization’s goal is to foster positive development opportunities for children and young adults living in distressed counties of Appalachia. The network offers programs in foster care, runaway and homeless youth services, employment training, diploma and GED support, mentoring, leadership training, and service learning opportunities.

Their mission is to “empower young people to become healthy, responsible and productive citizens now and in the future.”

According Shelly Horvath, director of communications at Sojourners, most of the programs offered are in Gallia, Meigs, Jackson, Athens, Vinton, Hocking and Ross counties.

“One of our programs is Youthbuild of Southeastern Ohio,” Horvath said. “Working with Americorps, the program provides job training and education for young people ages 16 to 24.”

She said that either they have dropped out of school or are not flourishing in their current school situation. Through this program, students are given an opportunity to learn skills while completing their high school program or working toward their GED.

“Job skills are taught through construction training,” she said. ” And participants can get industry certifications in construction, welding and logistic art.”

Other programs designed to meet the needs of the community include Basic Center. Here, ages birth to 18 who are not in the child services system can find temporary emergency housing in the Basic Center program. Children and youths are placed with a respite family while their living arrangements are stabilized.

Transitional Living programs assist runaway and homeless youth and provide an outreach program for kids living in unsafe situations, and Generation Now offers housing and services for youth 18 to 24.

Sojourners Family Development Programs include foster care placement and parent licensing and training, adoption services and works with child servicing agencies in 20 Ohio counties.

The annual auction is a way for Sojourners to raise funds to provide Christmas gifts and activities to these groups. Vinton County High School is located at 63910 US Hwy 50 in McArthur. The fundraiser begins at 4 p.m., drawings begin at 7 p.m. and refreshments will be available for purchase. Activities will include a Split the Pot and Cake Walk.

Anyone interested in donating items for the auction or for additional information on Sojourners may contact Fallon Kingery at 740-591-6290 or email [email protected] Also visit their web site at

Contact Lorna Hart at 740-992-2155 Ext. 2551

By Lorna Hart

[email protected]