Second ‘Dinner of Hope’ this Saturday

By Martin Graham -

The Second Chance Learning Center (DBA Center of Hope) staff is inviting the community to join them on Saturday, Nov. 23 from 6 to 8 p.m. for the second-annual “Dinner of Hope.”

Chiquita Nash, program director with Second Chance, announced the upcoming dinner earlier this month and explained that this is the perfect way for the community to help support the organization and enjoy a delicious meal at Crossroads Christian Church at 175 Halliday Way in Washington Court House. Tickets for the meal are $12 for adults and $7 for kids 2-years-old to 10-years-old, and can be picked up Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the center, located at 420 W. Oakland Ave. in Washington Court House.

“The dinner is to help raise funds to stop homelessness in our community,” Nash said. “Here at Second Chance we help to alleviate the homelessness here via referrals from several organizations. Temperatures are going to get deadly soon and we can help pay a portion to help those in need find a place to stay. So to raise some of the money we could really use to help those in Fayette County, we are asking the community to come get a meal of chicken, green beans, salad, dinner roll, desserts and drinks.”

Also during the dinner, the Madison Correctional Institution (MCI) — a big supporter of the center — will hold a presentation to explain the various work it has done to support the center. From vegetable donations to homeless mats and much more, MCI has been working hard with the center to provide for residents.

Finally, several auctions, including a pie auction and a silent auction, as well as performances by Sisters in Christ and Leighanne Cooper will be held during the dinner.

“Hope is seeing light in spite of being surrounded by darkness and that is what we are trying to represent at Second Chance,” Nash said. “Most of the tickets have been sold and we don’t have a lot of space left, but we will have carry-out options available.”

According to its website, the Second Chance Center is a “Community Faith-Based Rehabilitation and Training Center.” The idea was conceived by Washington Municipal Court Judge Victor Pontious, who is also the center’s founder. The center was founded upon the firm belief that everyone deserves a second chance in life. It is a place where those who have made wrong choices in their lives have the unique opportunity to turn their lives around and to begin making right choices, according to organizers, which will benefit both them and the community in which they live.

As previously reported, one goal is to improve the quality of the lives of Fayette County residents by providing job training, rehabilitation assistance and counseling services. Participants include those assigned to complete the program as a condition of probation by either the Fayette County Common Pleas Court or the Washington City Municipal Court. The center is also open to individuals assigned by the Adult Parole Authority and by Fayette County Job and Family Services.

Nash also said the center is still in need of volunteers and monetary donations. For more information about the dinner, volunteering or how to get involved with monetary donations, contact the center at (740)-620-4133.

Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy.

By Martin Graham