FRN discusses events, programs

By Kayla Hawthorne -

POINT PLEASANT — The Mason County Family Resource Network (FRN) met on Tuesday to discuss recent events throughout the county.

During the meeting, representatives from agencies gave reports about their different committees and missions.

The Mason County Baby Pantry, which is located at Bellemead United Methodist Church, is sponsoring around 200 children for Christmas. The pantry is still taking referrals and they will be funneling some of them to the Toys for Kids Association. In December, the pantry will be partnering with Mountain State Healthy Families for the December Circle of Parents. This will be Dec. 12 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Bellemead UM Church.

In the teen court update, FRN representatives said there were two cases in November that involved vaping. The two cases coming up in December involve tobacco use at schools.

A Teen Institute (TI) event took place on Oct. 24. Mentors said there were around 70 children in attendance. They heard speeches from inmates and participated in activities, such as a vaping escape room, healthy relationships, a teen court mock trial and more. TI is a partnership with the board of education that hosts two or three events per year to encourage students to remain drug free. The next event is planned for March with a science theme.

Career Connections held its quarterly training in Parkersburg on Nov. 14, which included the Regional Youth Council meeting.

FRN is hosting it’s annual Mason County Family Christmas event on Dec. 14 from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the old Central Elementary Gymnasium on Main Street. The event is free to all children. There will be crafts and books for children and information about programs for parents.

The Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for children is having a BINGO night at the Moose Lodged #731 on Dec. 9 at 7 p.m. There will be 14 games placed to benefit the Western Regional CASA.

Jon Machir with the homeless shelter announced that they will be handing out meal boxes for Thanksgiving. Machir also said the shelter met its first hurdle with the new shelter project. The expansion will allow the shelter to double its capacity of residents.

Members of FRN heard a presentation from Amy Saunders from Marshall. The university is conducting a regional assessment about drug prevention, treatment and recovery options in Calhoun, Jackson, Mason, Ritchie, and Roane counties in West Virginia. Saunders presented the committee with the information she had about options available to the public, then the members made list of programs they knew were available. FRN Executive Director Greg Fowler said there is a resource directory available on FRN’s website.

The next meeting of the Family Resource Network will be Jan. 1, 2020 at 3 p.m.

By Kayla Hawthorne

Reach her at (304) 675-1333, extension 1992.

Reach her at (304) 675-1333, extension 1992.