Help JA by supporting the arts

Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 15, 2009

Who has heard of JA? Have you ever wondered what is JA? Or what does JA do? Glad you asked!

JA of Natchez is part of the National Association of Junior Auxiliaries. We are here as a non-profit service organization to give our time and talents to the community by organizing projects that are beneficial to the general public, with particular emphasis on children. Our projects are designed to keep with our national slogan of Care Today, Character Tomorrow.

In the early days, Natchez Junior Auxiliary members volunteered their time to staff a nursery for underprivileged children. The members would pick the children up each morning and carry them to the “canteen” in Duncan Park where they would serve them breakfast and hold a playschool where they taught the children about basic hygiene and self-esteem. After a good lunch, the JA members would load the children in their station wagons and return them home. What a blessing they must have been.

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In the more recent years, the Natchez JA chapter has supported and partnered with various service projects. Some include being a Partner in Education with West Primary, helping serve at the Sunshine Shelter, hosting a Pack the Bus — which provides back to school supplies to area public schools — offering scholarships for area seniors, as well as serving the local Catholic Charities, DHS and CASA by hosting an Angel Tree. Just in the past year, our 19 members have served over 300 children and their families through over 700 volunteer hours. These are just a few of the meaningful services and programs that we believe aid the children of our community in their journey to a brighter future.

In providing these and many other meaningful services, we are aiding children in their journey to a brighter future as tomorrow’s leaders. For the coming year, we are continuing these efforts through the implementation of new and existing service projects that make a difference and break the cycle of dependency.

However, we need your help!

On Thursday, the Natchez JA Chapter will be hosting a fundraising art auction and exhibition at the Natchez Grand Hotel, 111 Broadway St., Natchez. The Exhibition begins at 6 p.m. with the auction starting at 7 p.m. Perry Berns, from the Perry Berns Gallery in Dallas, will have a wide variety of art to view, including original watercolors, oil paintings, pastels and etc. All the works will be beautifully matted and framed.

Door prizes will be rewarded and refreshments will be served along side a cash bar. For further information please call 601-445-0352.

As we look around us and see the growth and renewal in our lives and community, we are reminded daily that adversity can be overcome by both giving and receiving assistance and working together toward common goals. We know the children of today are the leaders of tomorrow.

Hope to see you there!

Tiffiany Clark Kyzar is a member of the Junior Auxiliary of Natchez.