PHILIPPI - After their grant money expired recently, a youth group in Philippi is trying to find another means to stay afloat.
Code Blue Youth Alliance in Philippi is free and open to kids from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. every Friday. It is located on Main Street across from the Barbour County Courthouse.
President Emily Wilkins said it is a place where kids can build relationships with their peers and the volunteers through various games and activities.
The Inter-Mountain photo by Melissa Toothman
Code Blue Youth Alliance President Emily Wlkins sits at a vendor table featuring the Harley Davidson XL1200 Custom Sportster 110th anniversary edition that the youth group is raffling off to help cover program costs.
Wilkins said since the grant has expired, the group is tasked with raising the money on their own to keep the doors open to children and also is in need of volunteers. Wilkins said the program averages an attendance of about 40 kids.
"For me, it's about making an environment and place for the kids to come and feel comfortable and accepted," Poling said. "I think that it's important that they get to experience a Christian community. I think it's important that they know that they're loved, and that they're not anonymous.
"The less anonymous they feel, I feel like, the more they decide to contribute to the community rather than get into any trouble. I think we have a great group of kids who come in every time. I love their energy, and I hope they continue to come. I hope they bring their friends."
To help raise money, Code Blue Youth Alliance is asking for donations and volunteers. The group also is raffling off a Harley Davidson XL1200 Custom Sportster 110th Anniversary Edition.
"The raffle is an attempt to keep the program open," Wilkins said.
Although the drawing is tentatively scheduled for June 28, it may be extended so that the group can meet their goal of selling 1,000 raffle tickets at $25 each. To find out more about the raffle, volunteering, donating or the youth group, contact Poling at 304-677-3174, or contact a volunteer at 304-457-2844 or 304-457-4433.