Oakton Church of the Brethren is proud to be one of the 35 churches and civic organizations that support the work of the Committee for Helping Others (CHO). CHO is an ALL VOLUNTEER non-profit organization that has provided simple loving charity to the needy in the Oakton, Vienna, Dunn Loring, and Merrifield areas of Northern Virginia since 1969. Learn more about CHO here: http://cho-va.com.
Current CHO Volunteer Opportunities
There are currently a number of volunteer opportunities available where people can jump in the shallow end of the pool or go right for the deep end or anywhere in between. These are described in the CHO Volunteer Opportunities document. If you feel called to help out in our community through CHO, fill out the CHO Volunteer Profile and get it to CHO.
Below are examples of how Oakton Church of the Brethren serves the community through CHO. Get involved with future service opportunities by talking to any member of the Action / Reflection Committee.
CHO Christmas Store – HO HO HO!
Throughout the year, the clothes closet volunteers set aside donations that are new (or pretty close to it) to be given away at the CHO Christmas Store. This year’s event will be held on Saturday December 10th at Vienna Presbyterian Church (VPC). Setup for the event will occur on Friday December 9th. Volunteers are needed to assist in the setup, the give-away, and in cleanup afterward.
Multiple volunteer opportunities exist:
1) Help load / transport / unload donations from our storage areas to VPC. Meet at CubeSmart, 300 Mill Street NE, Vienna at 8:00 a.m. on Friday morning.
2) Help unpack / sort / display donations as we set up for the event. Meet in the Great Hall of VPC, 124 Park Street NE, Vienna at 9:00 a.m. on Friday morning.
3) Help escort families through the CHO Christmas Store. Attend a training class at 8:30 a.m. prior to the 9:00 a.m. store opening. Meet in the VPC Narthex Saturday morning.
4) Help by staffing a table of donations to keep it filled with items during the event. Meet in the Great Hall at 8:45 a.m. Saturday morning.
5) Help clean up after the event. Meet in the Great Hall at 11:30 a.m. Saturday morning.
For our junior and senior high youth, we ask that you do not volunteer for any Saturday activities if you attend Fairfax County Public Schools. Although your help is needed and would be such a blessing to us, it is likely that you would see some of your classmates and the experience would be embarrassing to them. Rather, encourage your parents to volunteer. And, just so you know, this has actually happened in the past. Protecting the dignity of our clients is part of making sure their family has a wonderful Christmas.
Christmas Family Adoption – Merry Christmas!!!
Each year the church adopts a family or two through CHO. A gift tree graces our narthex and each ornament on it lists a gift for the family. Although these gifts aren’t delivered in a sleigh pulled by reindeer, the feeling we get from doing it is much the same.
CHO Furniture Program – 22 April 2017
Meet at the furniture warehouse around 8:45 a.m. At this time, things should be wrapping up with the furniture give-away that occurs from 8:00 a.m. until 9:00 a.m. Then we jump in the CHO truck and make a loop that includes five or six houses that have been scheduled in advance. We are usually done by noon. If you want to come an hour earlier, you can help with the furniture give-away too. Although this is more than what is actually needed, I have always found it rewarding to meet the folks who are directly benefitting from our efforts.
In addition to the above, our fitness conscious senior youth will be saving money on gym memberships by participating in the Brethren Exercise Program (also known as the CHO Furniture Program) on third Sundays. Activities include organizing the furniture warehouse, unloading the CHO truck, picking up donations from donors, and delivering furniture to clients.
A map to the CHO Furniture warehouse can be found at http://cho-va.com/wordpress/services/furniture/.
CHO Clothes Closet
Our highly motivated junior youth will be sorting clothes and other donations at the CHO Clothes Closet on third Sunday mornings. Think you can keep up with them? Bet you can’t!
CHO Food Closet – Vacation Bible School 2015 Project
Each year, the Action / Reflection Committee partners with the Christian Education Committee to choose a mission project for the year. This is introduced during Vacation Bible School and support continues throughout the following year. This year’s project is supporting the CHO Food Closet and we have already collected quite a bit!
CHO Board Meeting – Fourth Tuesdays
CHO board meetings are open to all those who are interested in serving our local community. Meetings are held on fourth Tuesdays (except July August, and December) at 7:30 p.m. at Vienna Presbyterian Church. Meetings will be held in Room 205.