This Saturday marks the sixth year that Kinship of the North has sponsored their annual Wine, Beer, Cheese and Chocolate Tasting fund raiser at Holiday Acres. With five successful years in the past and recent additions to this year’s event, Kinship director Jennifer Sackett anticipates an even greater turnout.
Organizing the April 13 event for the first time as director, Sackett has worked to bring awareness of the mentoring program to the Northwoods community in hopes that more adults in the area will offer their time as companions for local children in need.
“We have some great matches right now and have nearly half a dozen children on a waiting list, so we’re really hoping to get the community involved in providing mentors to these great children in need of an adult figure,” said Sackett.
The event will begin at 6 p.m. and will include live music and an array of large prizes donated by numerous businesses in the area. Some of the many prizes available at the silent auction include jewelry from Golden Karat Jewelers, Milwaukee Bucks tickets and a signed Green Bay football featuring signatures by former players Donald Driver and Greg Jennings. In addition to auction prizes, gift certificates to hotels and restaurants and prize baskets will be raffled off throughout the evening. A variety of wines, beers, non-alcoholic beverages, cheeses and truffles have been donated by local businesses and Holiday Acres’ Chef Tom is providing hors d’oeuvres throughout the evening.
Tickets for the event are $35 in advance and $40 at the door, and may be purchased by calling the Kinships office at (715) 362-2273. Tickets are also available at the Fun Factory Sweet Shop and Stoxen Pharmacy in Rhinelander. Proceeds from the event help to fund monthly group events, background checks and other program expenses.
For more than 30 years, Kinship of the North has been serving the community by helping to provide mentoring and friendship to youth in need.
“What the Kinship program really does is give kids opportunities to see and do things they otherwise wouldn’t,” said Sackett. “Many children come from single-parent homes, with their mother or father having multiple jobs and little time to spend outside of work. By allowing a mentor to give these kids a simple hour or two of their time each week, they’re introducing these kids to a variety of life experiences that may otherwise not be experienced.”
In order to become a Kinship mentor, one must be 18 years old or older, have automobile insurance, pass a background check and complete an interview. Interviews with children and their parents also help to match up mentors and kids with similar interests.
“The relationship between a mentor and child is one that provides friendship, dependability and simply someone to trust and have fun with,” said Sackett. As the former mentor trainer and outreach specialist for MOCK (Mentoring Oneida County Kids), Sackett understands that adult support outside of the classroom is an important part of a child’s life in terms of development and striving for success. “It’s important for adolescents to have that one-on-one time to help bring that sense of community that may have been lost,” she said.
Mentors must be available for at least four hours a month to spend with their match and must agree to a year-long commitment to help establish a consistent bond. To learn about becoming a mentor or for more information about the fund raiser on April 13, contact Jennifer at (715) 362-2273 or firstname.lastname@example.org.