Athens County Children Services

October & November 2011  |  Volume 2  |  Issue 6      


 Report Child Abuse    |   Children Waiting   |   Events   |   Services   |   Foster & Adoption

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In This Issue
Children Waiting: Brennan and Chris
Santa Tree Project
Home at last!
Embracing our rich history
The garden project
Parenting Tips: Safe Halloween!
Children Waiting


 Brennan, Age 10  



Brennan is a very active boy who loves to be outdoors playing football and baseball. Brennan recently received a reward for his participation in a basketball camp. He also enjoys playing videos games on the PlayStation or the Wii. Brennan is very funny and loves to tell jokes. Although shy at first, Brennan is outgoing once he is comfortable and can be very affectionate with people he loves and trusts.  


 For more information on Brennan, click here!  



Chris, Age 15




Chris is a very likable young man who wants to be outside riding his bike and being active. He is very creative and enjoys making and creating different things. Chris likes to be around his peers and is very good with the other kids in his foster home. Chris is talkative and engages in conversations very well. Chris recently discovered he likes playing sports, and wants a family that would support his desire to try new things.


For more information on Chris, please click here! 


Community Education


Did you know that Athens County Children Services would love to come speak with your community group about how to recognize and prevent child abuse? For more information, please call (740) 592-3061 and ask to speak with either Laura Bobo or Donna Robison.

Santa Tree Project

Applications for the Santa Tree will be accepted from
Tuesday, November 1 through Monday, November 28. If you or someone you know if in need of help with gifts for children this holiday season, please stop by ACCS Building 14 to fill out an application for help. Please note: All applications must be filled out by the legal guardian and there will be NO waiting list. Please call (740) 592-3061 with questions!

Upcoming Events!

3rd Annual Finding Families For Our Kids  


November 4, 2011

6:00 pm to 8:00 pm   


Come learn about children in Southeast Ohio who are waiting for their forever families. We will have videos, pictures, and narratives of children available for adoption. Light refreshments will be provided! The meeting will take place in ACCS Building 14. For more information, contact Sheri Rettig at (740) 592-3061.   

Contact Us

If you suspect abuse or neglect, please call:




(M-F, 8:00am - 4:30pm)




(After-hours, weekends, holidays)

If you would like more information on foster care and adoption, please call:




(M-F, 8:00am - 4:30pm)


Home at last!

Adoption finalization

This young lady (far left) has found a permanent family and her adoption was finalized just one month prior to her 18th birthday. Her dad says:

"We got into this because she needed a permanent home, and found out that we needed her too!"

Congratulations to this youth and her loving family.

Embracing our rich history


Athens County Children Services is exploring the rich history of their institution. The agency has been carrying out its mission of protecting children, strengthening families, and securing futures since the original children's home was founded in 1876.


Before the opening of the Children's Home, neglected children and orphans were subject to unsafe conditions and an appalling quality of life at the county infirmarAthens Childrens Homey. Quaker philanthropist John S. Fowler, shocked by the living conditions of these children, raised money to support the construction of a children's home.


 Fowler not only wanted to protect the children from the unsafe conditions, but he wished to provide them with the opportunity to grow and develop in a safe environment. Due to economical factors within the county, Fowler was forced to solicit funds to realize his vision. The $22,513 used to start-up the home was collected locally, and a 135-year-old document of donors' names and pledges remains framed at the agency.


The creation of the children's home provided a safe haven and education for hundreds of local children that would have otherwise gone without. The institutions' close ties with the citizens and history of Athens County show through the lasting approval, and financial support through the agency's levy.


Now, Athens County Children Services continues to work to prevent child abuse and neglect in the local community by offering resources for families, and by finding loving and nurturing homes for children. It is still their belief that every child should be given the proper resources to grow and flourish in society.


In celebration of the lasting relationship between Athens County Children Services and local residents, the agency is now seeking out the former employees, volunteers, and residents of the Athens Children's Home. They are reaching out to and inviting those with memories of the earlier years of the institution to share their personal experiences, recollections, and even photographs. If you or a loved one possess memories of the original Athens Children Home, you are encouraged to share them by contacting Sherri Oliver at (740) 592-3061.



Garden project provides more than just produce  



Athens County Children Services has been growing--growing fresh produce, that is.  Throughout the warm seasons the agency's own garden, which is located behind building 18, has provided fresh fruits and vegetables like squash, tomatoes, and more. The garden project is a way of providing families with nutritious and cost-efficient produce, while at the same time offering a learning and bonding experience.


The garden project began in 2010, and it has since been managed by several different volunteers within the agency and community. Over the spring and summer, families were invited to enjoy the garden while taking some of the produce home with them. In preparation for the chill of the coming fall, the garden has been shielded from pests and frost with a homemade hoop house, which will act as a green house, preserving the produce until the mid-autumn months.


Susan Luring, who is currently heading the garden project, has exciting plans in store for spring, including hosting a garden party and reconstructing some elements of the garden to make it more conducive to the visiting children. With these changes, Luring hopes to boost interest and advance the learning experience that the garden has to offer.


"We hope to get it to the point that families can go to the garden and do their own thing," Luring said.


Along with the opportunity it provides for a bonding experience, the garden is part of an incentive to shift local families to a more nutritious and self-sufficient diet. Through means of the garden and similar nutrition-based activities that are provided to clients, the agency hopes to contribute to Governor Kasich's long-term goal to reduce obesity in the region and implement healthy lifestyle choices. Luring is working on this plan through her efforts with AmeriCorps.


These health incentives coincide with the USDA's shift from the outdated food pyramid to MyPlate, which is promoting the message that half of your plate should consist of vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables.


Michelle Corrigan maintained the garden throughout its second summer. She reinforced the learning experiences that the garden had to offer by creating an educational, self-guided Garden Activity Box.


"The boxes contain both indoor activities, such as learning about pollinators and what vitamins we get from eating fruits and vegetables, and outdoor activities, such as measuring plant growth and watering the garden," Corrigan said.


The garden continues to provide families with delicious fruits and vegetables, as well as a unique opportunity to bond and grow over a new experience.


"I feel like the garden project is a great way for families to connect and for skills and stories to be passed down through the generations," Jordan Vincent, a Summer Service Corps who worked in the garden over the past summer, said. "The mission of Children's Services is to build healthy families, and what better way to do that than through gardening."


Parenting: How to have a safe Halloween


Halloween can be an exciting holiday for children, but a hectic night for parents. You can use these tips to ensure that both you and the little ones can enjoy a safe and fun Halloween together: 

  • When Trick-or-Treating, stay on well-lit streets and walk on the sidewalk. 
  • Never let young children go on neighborhood rounds by themselves. A parent or responsible guardian should always accompany and keep sight of Trick-or-Treaters. 
  • Plan to wear costumes that are bright and reflective, so children are easily seen after dark. 
  • Though tampering is rare, an adult should always check the food and candy that children receive to be sure that it is not out-of-date or unwrapped. Discard of any suspicious items. 
  • Be prepared with flashlights and fresh batteries for everyone venturing out after dark.
  • To make your home safe for other Trick-or-Treaters, check your outdoor lights and make sure to clear the path of any hoses, wet leaves, or other objects that children could trip on. 
  • Choose flame resistant fabrics and accessories for your child's costume. Place candlelit pumpkins away from curtains or other flammable material, and be sure to extinguish when left unattended.  

Halloween can be enjoyable for all when the proper precautions are taken. We hope you can put these tips to use while celebrating a safe and festive holiday! 


Please, if you know of someone who would be interested in ACCS programs and news, forward this e-mail. Thank you again for your interest in the work that Athens County Children Services does. We appreciate your support!




Sherri Oliver
Public Relations & Community Events Coordinator
Athens County Children Services

Athens County Childrens Services

P.O. Box 1046 Athens, Ohio 45701

Phone: (740) 592-3061 Fax: (740) 593-3880