HOV Festival Showcases Community Organizations

Published 3:07 pm Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Those who come to the Heart of Virginia Festival they may carry home a better understanding of the community organizations that operate in and around Farmville.

A variety of non-profit organizations will have booths at the Saturday, May 5, HOVF event, primarily on High Street, to inform festival-goers of their activities. Some will be advertising the services they have to offer, while others are promoting opportunities for area residents to get involved in their community. Many will have items related to their programs to sell or give away.

Those who love animals will want to look for the booths of the Central Virginia Humane Society (serving Buckingham County), the Southside SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, serving 12 Southside counties with a no-kill animal shelter) and Safe Haven Horse Rescue with equine-related items to sell.

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Offering services to people are Madeline's House providing shelter to abused women and families, the Piedmont Medical Services Corps who respond to public health emergencies, the Pregnancy Support Center offering counseling and education, Hope Community Services with their job training and more, Crossroads CSB working with mental health and substance abuse, the Virginia Workforce Center, STEPS (with STEPS Winefest tickets for sale) and the Longwood Student Veterans with information on available benefits and support.

The Farmville Police Department, which demonstrates its service continuously during the festival, will also have an information booth.

Many local groups will be publicizing their work in hopes of attracting new volunteers and members. Those interested in outdoor activities should check out the Central Piedmont Virginia Master Naturalists who practice conservation and management of natural resources, Virginia State Parks with their recreational opportunities and the Friends of the Appomattox River who conserve and use local waters.

In the “something for everyone” category fall the Farmville chapter of the Experimental Aviation Association, the Sons of Confederate Veterans (High Bridge Camp #1581) and the Friends of the NRA which raises fund to promote the future of shooting sports.

Civic-minded persons may be interested in the work of Downtown Farmville whose aim is the revitalization of the Farmville center, the Farmville Fire Department Auxiliary (selling dog treats) and the Farmville Junior Women's Club which supports local charities. Helping organizations looking for support are Habitat for Humanity with its house building and ReStore operations and Operation Christmas Child packing shoe boxes with useful gifts for children overseas. Family concerns are represented by Holistic Moms Network promoting holistic parenting and MOPS (Mothers of Pre-Schoolers.) The Virso Recreation and Community Center from southeastern Prince Edward County will also be represented, selling bottled water and auctioning a gift basket.

Those looking for a major challenge and change should visit the Southside Virginia Community College booth for information on their Adult Basic Education and GED courses.

Not to be forgotten are the groups with a religious orientation: Gideons International distributing copies of the New Testament, New Life Assembly of God, Pleasant View Baptist (with baked goods and plants for sale) and the youth group from St. John's Lutheran Church.

Life isn't all fun and games, and neither is the Heart of Virginia Festival. The festival is a celebration of our life together, but it is also a challenge to everyone to become even more involved in the community.