Visualize not having a family to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, no one to go home to and no one to spend the holiday with. Thousands of youth in Columbus and around Ohio will be facing that very circumstance next week.
However, members of ROTC will join Campus Ministries, Student Government and President Bowman to sponsor a Thanksgiving event at Capital to help make a difference. Formally titled the Central Ohio Foster Care Alumni of America (FCAA) Thanksgiving Event at Capital University, the meal will take place Nov. 20.
FCAA is a national organization made up of former foster youth and allies. According to Lisa Dickson, communications chair of FCAA, this organization exists to connect individuals who have experienced foster care personally, and to transform child welfare policy and practice.
Bethany Koshinsky, a member of ROTC, organized many details for the event, such s obtaining funding and organizing a space to host the event,
“There is a lot of planning that’s going into making this event possible. This year I tried to set a goal of getting more organizations on campus involved. After all, I believe this is an event that truly affects our whole campus,” Koshinsky said.
Geoffrey Maney, another member of ROTC, has also contributed largely to the Thanksgiving event.
“This event is a great outreach for the children in the foster care system,” Maney said, “Many people don’t realize what it is like to grow up in a home that is not yours, raised by parents who are not biologically yours. It is an opportunity for the children to be brought together and form a community bond. I believe this event makes all the difference in the world to some of the foster kids.”
The Thanksgiving event will take place that Sunday from 1 p.m. until 3 p.m. in the Main Dining Room. Students and organizations are encouraged to volunteer during the event; however, the food will be served to foster youth first due to the set budget.
For youth attending the event, this meal may be the only Thanksgiving dinner they have this year.
The central purpose is “to bring our community together to provide a family for those who don’t have one,” Koshinsky said. “I hope we have made them feel like they have a family and community that completely supports them.”